Friday, 25 September 2015

Am Ende des Tages (3½ Stars)

Robert Janacek has everything any man could want. He's a candidate for election to the Austrian parliament, and due to his popularity his election is a mere formality. He's married to Katharina, the beautiful daughter of an Austrian millionaire. They're expecting their first baby. They're driving to one of Katharina's father's houses in the mountains to take a break before the election.

On the autobahn they're pursued by another vehicle. At first it seems like random road rage, but when they stop Robert recognises the other driver. It's Wolfgang, an old school friend that he hasn't seen for more than 20 years. They talk for a while, but Robert doesn't want to be seen with him in public. Wolfgang is a transvestite, and photographs of them together wouldn't be good for his image as a politician. Robert tries to get away, but Wolfgang pursues him on his trip to the mountains, becoming increasingly violent, threatening to reveal a secret Robert has kept since he was 15.

This is a thrilling story, as far as the action is concerned. The secrets come out too soon. I would have preferred to have been kept on edge until the end of the film. Well, a few last secrets are squeezed out in the final scenes, but by that time it was too late, I already hated Robert and didn't care what happened to him. It's a far from perfect film, but worth watching once. If you can speak German. I doubt it will ever be made available in English.

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