Mother Dearest: Lara (2019)

Lara begins as the story of a suicide postponed, and the question that hangs over the film is whether it will end with Lara finishing what she began. Even before she gets the chair and steps on it, it’s clear that Lara isn’t just looking out of the window to enjoy the view of Berlin. There’s something in how she holds herself that seems… defeated, perhaps. This is not a woman who sees her life as a bouquet of possibilities. This is a woman who has had enough. Enough of what, though? Of whom?

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Art vs. -ism

Reader, it’s not easy for me to describe why I like Never Look Away so much, so let me start with the title. The movie’s original title is Werk ohne Autor (Work without Author), which is much better, since it’s a movie about a fledgling painter who seems to see himself as a mere conduit for his paintings than an active artist. A title like Never Look Away suggests that it’s about the Holocaust, although that is not so wrong either. The movie was written and directed by Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck, who also wrote and shot The Lives of Others, an excellent movie, and the slightly disappointing The Tourist. Werk ohne Autor is loosely based on the life of German painter Gerhard Richter, who has seen the movie and disapproves of it. Continue reading