Free enterprise and its discontents served with polite cocktail party outrage, Sorkin-style. Complete with easy digested daddy issued and Idris Elba around to coach audience reactions. He knows how to keep things moving (those are surprise light 140 minutes) and to hire good people. Maury Levy is around so no one has doubts that this just prestige TV goes to the movies.
Patrick Lung Kong followed The Story of Discharged Prisoner with this another tale of criminal trying to reform, but instead of the earlier film social determinism there´s a large dose catholic guilt and doomed romanticism. Patrick Tse again plays the criminal out of prison, but his desire to go straight is motivated from wanting to help his victim’s blind daughter. There’s a lot of asides about blind schools (it wouldn’t be a Lung Kong film without its share of didactic…
"We're late, darling, we're late
The curtain descends, everything ends too soon, too soon"
One can't stop history. Come for Vertigo by way of Fassbinder, stays to be complete emotional devasted. Literally physical painful to sit through at times. The best thing about Petzold spare staging, the way his images can both feel charged with history and emotionally naked might have never been put to such good use. Also, Nina Hoss is beyond words (Zehrfeld is pretty great in a tricky role as well);
Literally greatest drop the mic ending ever.
I kinda want to punch people comparing this to Demy in the face as much as I wanted to punch Gosling’s (whose self-absorption is put to great use here even if I’m not sure it was intentional). That said, the anxiety of failure that runs as undercurrent throughout this does stings some. It is half a prick’s wish-fulfillment fantasy and half a manic depressed nightmare of someone afraid to be exposed and the way those disparate parts run together is curious at least.