Top positive review
on 3 September 2017
Having seen this film some years ago I was glad to catch up again & find it stood up to my first viewing.
The basic story is set in Berlin during WW2 -Lilly is a mother of four and married to a soldier( on the eastern front) Felice is a Jewish lesbian working with the underground through false I.D.,her wits & help from sympathetic friends and a group of 'sexual compatriots'.The film follows the attraction the two feel for each other & how this impacts on family,work ,life & death in this most dangerous of times.
Credit must go to the designers which gives an almost timeless look ,so when intervention comes from the Gestapo or from a bombing raid it has great impact.
Lilly is played by Juliane Kohler,best known for her portrayal of Eva Braun in 'Downfall' & also for her starring role in the excellent Oscar winning 'Nowhere in Africa'. Maria schrader has had a number of roles, the best known in the award winning film 'In Darkness' & was recently in the highly acclaimed TV series 'Deutschland '83'.
The film is based on a true story related some years later with Input from others with a relation to Felice.
To those who may feel the subject matter may be off putting ,I'd say don't be,the director Max Farberbock has done a fine job without being exploitative.There is a strong musical score and the rest of the cast deserve credit for solid support, it's just a bit of a shame that apart from a trailer there are no extras-Here's hoping for the 20th anniversary they may put out an updated disc .
A number of reviewers have commented on the quality of the DVD image and it's fair to say it is a bit grainy & dark in places but I found this didn't detract too much from the almost TV movie look. The film is in German language(with English subtitles)-1999: 2 hours approx,in letterbox format for 4:3 screen size.Includes trailer.
Optimum releasing DVD,2001.