After Christian Petzold’s impressive last offering Yella (2007) and Brian’s staggering recommendation, I checked out Jerichow.
Three compellingly peculiar characters round out the story. Thomas (Benno Fürmann) is an ex-soldier who assists Ali (Hilmi Sözer) after an auto accident. Ali hires Thomas as his driver. Ali has several drunk-driving incidents and his license is suspended. To keep his snack bars operating, he must visit them daily and collect his cut.
Thomas meets Ali’s wife Laura (Nina Hoss). Sparks fly and an affair begins. The affair is conducted so riskily close to Ali that it begs the question, does Ali know? Has he set them up? Are Laura and Ali in collusion? Thomas’s and Ali’s friendship deepens as seemingly does Ali’s trust in Thomas.
(Spoiler Alert: Read at Your Own Risk!)
I couldn’t trust Laura’s motives. It was difficult to believe that she wasn’t going to turn. She was so guarded for so long that I was suspicious. In the end, the movie saddens. Turns out Ali has an ulterior motive but entirely different than what I’d expected. This movie carefully builds suspense as it takes its time telling its tale of loss of innocence.
Writer/Director: Christian Petzold
Run time: 92 minutes