Fred Kelemen – Abendland AKA Nightfall (1999)

A largely plotless, fado-scored journey through the gloomy cobblestone streets, zombie bars, and fetid basements of a sordid harbor town populated by German-speaking sots and Portuguese guest workers, Nightfall is Kelemen’s most polished despair-fest. An unhappy young couple, Leni and Anton, quarrel and split separately into the rat’s ass of the evening. Everyone is looking for love, but no one finds any—although Leni does pick up a trick. With perfect bad timing, Anton wanders by the parked car where she is engaged, and in a frenzy of depression, carves her name on his knuckles. A sympathetic hooker bandages his hand and even gets him to dance before she lets her wig slip and passes out on the bar. Then it’s on through an after-hours club of sodden depravity to the bleary dawn.
Kelemen’s mode is abject minimalism. There’s little dialogue, though ample background clamor. Grimly clutching the screen, his long takes give events the sense of real time. Even when verging on self-parody, Nightfall is rigorously committed to its particular vision. Kelemen is surely the least compromising German director of his generation.

1.46GB | 2h 20m | 640×400 | avi

Subtitles:English hardsubbed

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One comment

  1. what a true fortune that you have posted this sample of underground pessimism! and the more primitive the format in which it was hung, the more congruent the film is with the plot. Thanks

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