The title of this film translates literally as "The Warrioress", but it's been released in America as "Combat Girls". It follows the life of Marisa, a 20-year-old girl who is part of Germany's right wing scene in a small town somewhere in the east of Germany.
In America right wing extremism is splintered, as we see in the film "Imperium". Some groups admire Adolf Hitler for his ideas, while many white supremacist groups reject Nazism as un-American. In Germany it's a lot simpler. All right wing extremist groups take their inspiration from Hitler. The swastika is the symbol of their allegiance.
There's a history to Marisa's development. After her parents divorced her grandfather became her replacement father figure. She has idolised him all her life, and she unthinkingly accepts the Nazi ideology that he has held since his youth in the Third Reich.
Marisa is leading a double life. She befriends a 12-year-old refugee who has gone into hiding because he fears that he will be deported. He entered the country claiming he was from Afghanistan, but the authorities now now he is from Pakistan. She gives him food and a place to sleep. Maybe this is because she regrets not having a child of her own.
She also thinks the men in her movement are stupid. They aren't just white supremacists, they're male supremacists. Her boyfriend loves her, or so he says. but he hits her whenever she disagrees with him. That's reason enough to get out.
This is the first film I've watched about the German right wing scene. I thought it might be a compelling window into the world of modern Nazis, but I was disappointed. As German film critics have written, the story gets caught up in complications. Too much is happening. If the plot had been simplified the film would have been better. To name just a few things, during the film Marisa's grandfather dies and her boyfriend is arrested. Those are unnecessary details that distract from the story. There's also a second young girl, 15-year-old Svenja, who joins the movement as a rebellion against her strict father. (That's why the American film title has "girls" in the plural). The relationship between the two girls is too complicated, beginning with enmity before turning into an uneasy friendship. It's all so unnecessary. A simpler plot would have led to a better film.
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