Uwe Schrader – Kanakerbraut (1984)
Here’s the debut feature film by director Uwe Schrader, who’s still a well-kept secret of german cinema. I first read about him in the most recent issue of Cargo. His realistic “Milieu” films recall the works of Klaus Lemke, Roland Klick or the austro-canadian filmmaker John Cook. Kanakerbraut is only one hour long, and it is about the dull life of Paul (Peter Franke) and his encounters with similar characters in Berlin Kreuzberg.
The film focuses on Paul. He is 40, takes on odd jobs and lives alone in a shabby dwelling. His hangout is a rough drinker’s bar with a juke box and dancing. One day, he meets Lisa there. Lisa lives alone. Her husband is doing field installation work in Sudan. Paul used to be married. His wife left him years ago. KANAKERBRAUT is a film about desires. It is set in the grey zone between petty bourgeoisie and dissolution. Paul and Lisa are both equally distanced from their partners, on whom they’ve attached their dreams. That doesn’t create any solidarity between them, but rather antagonism. Conceived of as a laconic little milieu film, the film is authentic in regard to the locations and the language of its heroes. Coarseness can be found in immediate proximity to tenderness, moments of great sincerity that boarder on blasphemy side by side with the loneliness that stems from a lack of communication and of egoism.
Awards: 1984 Deutscher Filmpreis / Bundesfilmpreis – Filmband in Gold für Beste Regie (Uwe Schrader)
language:german with english substitles