HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Deeper You Dig, The
Trouble Brewing
Song Without a Name
Incident in a Ghostland
Relic
Nobody
Now, At Last!
Tales from the Hood
Radio Parade of 1935
Dead
Death at Broadcasting House
Huracan
Ghost Strata
Call to Spy, A
Tailgate
Other Lamb, The
Every Time I Die
Lynn + Lucy
Topsy-Turvy
Honest Thief
Blood and Money
Rose: A Love Story
Antrum: The Deadliest Film Ever Made
Om Dar-B-Dar
Silencing, The
J.R. 'Bob' Dobbs and the Church of SubGenius
Dick Johnson is Dead
Two/One
Cognition
Legacy of Lies
I Am Woman
Alien Addiction
Dare, The
South Terminal
Little Monsters
Yield to the Night
My Zoe
Young Playthings
End of Summer
Times of Harvey Milk, The
   
 
Newest Articles
Down to the Welles: Orson Welles Great Mysteries Volume 2 on DVD
Herding Cats: Sleepwalkers on Blu-ray
Confessions of a Porn Star: Adult Material on DVD
They're Still Not Sure It is a Baby: Eraserhead on Blu-ray
Werewolves are Real: Dog Soldiers on Digital
Rose: A Love Story - Producers April Kelley and Sara Huxley Interview
Phone Phreak: 976-EVIL on Blu-ray
Living the Nightmare: Dementia on Blu-ray
Becky and The Devil to Pay: Ruckus and Lane Skye Interview
Big Top Bloodbath: Circus of Horrors on Blu-ray
A Knock on the Door at 4 O'clock in the Morning: The Strangers on Blu-ray
Wives of the Skies: Honey Lauren Interview
To Catch a Thief: After the Fox on Blu-ray
Tackling the Football Film: The Arsenal Stadium Mystery on Blu-ray
Film Noir's Golden Couple: This Gun for Hire on Blu-ray
The Doctor Who Connection: Invasion on Blu-ray
Hill's Angles: Benny Hill and Who Done It? on Blu-ray
Big Willie Style: Keep It Up Downstairs on Blu-ray
Walt's Vault: 5 Cult Movies on Disney+
Paradise Lost: Walkabout on Blu-ray
Buster Makes Us Feel Good: Buster Keaton - 3 Films (Volume 3) on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Nights In with ABC 3 - Don't Go Away - I Could Do with a Bit of Cheer Now!
What Use is Grief to a Horse? Equus on Blu-ray
For God's Sake Strap Yourselves Down: Flash Gordon on 4K UHD Collector's Edition
Party Hard: Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure on Blu-ray
   
 
  Winter Sleepers Festive Fates
Year: 1997
Director: Tom Tykwer
Stars: Ulrich Matthes, Marie-Lou Sellem, Heino Ferch, Floriane Daniel, Josef Bierbichler, Agathe Taffertshofer, Sophia Dirscherl, Simon Donatz, Jakob Donatz, Laura Tonke, Werner Schnitzer, Sebastian Schipper, Robert Meyer, Harry Täschner, Walter Anichhofer
Genre: Drama, RomanceBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: Some days never go the way you expect, and not necessarily in a good way, either. What happened to Rene (Ulrich Matthes) is a case in point, he was a projectionist at a Bavarian cinema in the Alps and was walking home one morning near Christmas after overindulging himself the evening before when he wandered up to one of the lodges and peeked in through the window to see the couple who lived there making love. He took a snap on his camera, and proceeded to take a chance on their sports car: the keys were in the ignition, so off Rene drove along the treacherously icy roads, and as bad luck would have it met a car pulling a horse box going in the opposite direction...

This is bad luck because fickle fate has it that the driver, Theo (Josef Bierbichler), was looking about for a walkie-talkie at the time and his eyes were not on the road, so he overturns, the horse is fatally injured, and his stowaway daughter is thrown from the box onto the verge. Rene meanwhile careens over the edge of the road and lands buried in the snow; still dazed, he clambers out and continues wandering home, but this has set in motion a series of events both minor and major, yet will each contribute to a resolution that may not be expected, but also may not be much of a resolution.

Winter Sleepers, or Winterschläfer as it was titled in its original German, was the movie director Tom Tykwer made before his international breakthrough Run Lola Run. You can understand why this was not his first big hit across the world, and you could argue he never hit as big again as he did with Lola, for it was a meandering drama with thriller overtones that never quite realised their potential, as if he was happier observing the romantic make-ups and break-ups than he was bringing the threads of his more suspenseful plotlines together for a satisfying conclusion. There was a conclusion, but whether it was what the audience would have wanted when it arrived somewhat out of the blue was debatable.

Or into the white, which may be a more apt phrase. Essentially we were following two couples and the angst-ridden Theo, who feels everyone blames him for his daughter's coma, yet he would blame the other driver who has inconveniently for him disappeared, along with the flash car (it is concealed by the snow). As for the couples, Rene meets a nurse, Laura (Marie-Lou Sellem) who takes a liking to him and his disarming ways, not realising he may be suffering brain damage, while she had leased a cabin to Marco (Heino Ferch), a skiing instructor, and his girlfriend Rebecca (Floriane Daniel), a translator who as we see over the course of the narrative, is really too good for him, wanting to love him even as he proves himself unworthy, and for that matter starts to stray in the second half of the movie.

What was most captivating about Winter People was not that plot so much as the manner Tykwer went about filming it. He captured a Christmassy look with his lighting and design, always making certain to deliver on a curiously dreamlike atmosphere and ensuring the younger cast looked attractive enough for a soap opera, especially the radiant Daniel who was evidently the focus for perhaps too much of the time (was it important for us to see her masturbating, for example?). With this end of year mood, we could discern fresh opportunities lining up for the next year, be they benevolent or otherwise, some forced upon the characters and leaving them having to make the best of them, or a genuine new dawn as New Year's Eve brings about positive change. That said, any philosophy was wrapped up in the pretty visuals, which at times resembled a series of seasonal advertisements, though for what was harder to perceive, just a general Christmassiness one supposes. That ending was a little absurd, on consideration, but this was a mood piece overall.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 1413 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Paul Smith
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
  Lee Fiveash
  Mick Stewart
Enoch Sneed
  Dsfgsdfg Dsgdsgsdg
   

 

Last Updated: