Directed by: Marc Rothemund
Countries & Regions: Germany
Studio: Drakes Avenue via Lace
Length: 115 mins
Region: Region 2
Released: 24 April 2006
Cat No: DAP7725
Screen ratio 1:1.33
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This harrowing German drama is based on the real life events surrounding the German White Rose resistance group, an organisation of... Read More
Sophie Scholl was the most prominent member of the White Rose Movement, the Munich student group who disseminated anti-Nazi propaganda during WW2. Marc Rothemund’s rigorous drama, detailing Scholl’s arrest and interrogation, first appears to have been conceived as a challenge. Can a filmmaker pare his technique down to the barest minimum yet avoid theatricality? And can a film really go under a title like that and still be suspenseful?
The answer is yes to both, mainly as the raw material - Scholl’s story, derived from recently-released transcripts - has been dramatised on every level. Rothemund employs a basic film grammar during the two-handed scenes between Sophie (Julia Jentsch) and her interrogator Mohr (Alexander Held). Any visual flourish registers doubly.
The result is as historically resonant as another recent German chamber piece, Downfall, with a central performance as thoughtful and tenacious as the film itself. As The Edukators suggested, Jentsch is a real discovery: an actress with the ability to suggest not only would she have ideas, but that she would hold onto them, however fragile, and
whatever price her characters might have to pay as a consequence.