Marianne & Juliane

1981

Drama

126
IMDb Rating 7.5 10 1,644

Synopsis


Downloaded 6,363 times
September 4, 2019

Cast

Barbara Sukowa as Marianne
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
884.9 MB
1280*720
German
NR
23.976 fps
106 min
P/S N/A / N/A
1.69 GB
1920×1080
German
NR
23.976 fps
106 min
P/S N/A / N/A

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Rigor 10 / 10 / 10

One of the best narrative films of the 1980's

The film is a fictional reworking of the true story of the Esslin Sisters- one of whom was a successful social democratic feminist writer and the other a revolutionary member of the "terrorist" Baader-Meinhof Group (also called the Red Army Faction). Three members of the real Badder Meinhof group, Andreas Baader, Gudrun Enslin, and Jean-Carl Raspe mysteriously "committed suicide" while in prison after other members of the RAF allegedly participated in the kidnapping and eventual murder of a wealthy businessman and an aborted hijacking attempt. Popular opinion in Germany (and most other places) has always held that Baader, Enslin, and Raspe were murdered by the state. Much evidence seems to point towards reasonable doubt that the three took their own lives. Von Totta takes the story of these two women and creates a kind of historical canvas (much as Orson Welles does with Hearst in Citizen Kane) to explore a wide range of issues concerning modern political and social life. The film is remarkably fair minded. Although, the narrative spends much more time with Julianne the social democratic journalist it does not stack the deck towards her. Her reformist views towards social change seems forced and at times desperate. Nor does Von Trotta, romanticize Marianne, the revolutionary. Her actions are often ill conceived and her confidence that history will prove her correct seem equally forced and desperate. Amazingly, Von Trotta creates a dialectic in this film by actually sympathizing with both women. She seems to suggest that in the remarkable confusion and despair of the late 20th century simply to attempt to remain engaged with a project that desires fundamental change is an act of hope. The film is probably best known for its impeccable acting. The two leading performers Barbara Sukowa (Marianne) and Jutta Lempe (Julianne) are extraordinary. There scenes together are examples of some of the finest acting in contemporary cinema. The supporting performances in this film are also superb. One of the remarkable things is the way the film shows that two children from the same family could become radicalized in such different ways. The film definitely roots the women's politicalization in their family and national history. Why does one Sister become convinced that violent revolution is possible and necessary, while, the other becomes convinced that a nonviolent "war of position" is the more appropriate choice? Both women have clearly broken from the conservative tradition of their upbringing in the home of their Protestant Minister Father, but, what is it that has caused the ideological differences? Von Trotta is wise enough not to answer this question directly or didactically. The late Canadian film critic, Jay Scott said in a review of the film: "The methodology is Proustian: Von Trotta cuts with effortless clarity back and forth through the sister's lives." This seems to be a remarkably efficient way of explaining the films structure and effect. The remarkable editing of this film by Dagmar Hirtz (whose excellent work has won him three German film awards- Check out his equally amazing contributions to Maximillian Schells END OF THE GAME, Jeanine Meerapfel's MALOU, and Volker Schlondorff's VOYAGER) and the cinematography by Franz Rath (whose lensed most of Von Trotta's films) should be studied as textbook examples of narrative film craftsmanship. The technical aspects of the film make the time tripping narrative technique seem natural rather than distancing. Later in the same review, Scott says what I think is the most precise statement ever written about the film: "Marianne and Julianne is a document that struggles to come to terms with an impossible past in a barely feasible present, and its director appears to realize that her film, like its heroines, is trapped by history, which is why she avoids pretending to be definitive - either about the sisters, or about the agonies of the nation she has presumed to concretize in their story." This defiant stance of refusing to be definitive about character motivations and ethical/ideological essences connects the film to a wide variety of other masterworks that have also used contemporary history in a similarly complex way- I am reminded particularly of Alain Resnais (esp. Hiroshima Mon Amor and Muriel). I can't recommend this film highly enough. It is to my mind one of the most

Reviewed by howard.schumann 10 / 10 / 10

Psychological insight and emotional truth

In the late 1960s and early 1970s, radical student groups, frustrated with the lack of results from peaceful protests against the Vietnam War, channeled their energies into campaigns of direct action. In the U.S., The Weathermen engaged in widespread civil disobedience including bombings of the Pentagon and the Capitol buildings. In West Germany, a left-wing group that came to be known as the Baader Meinhof Gang or the Red Army Faction, attempted to foment a Marxist-style revolution by engaging in terrorist-style attacks, a campaign that led to robbing banks, kidnappings, and ultimately murder. The three main founding members were Andreas Baader, Gudrun Ensslin, and Ulrike Meinhof. All were captured and sent to prison. Maragarethe von Trotta's 1981 film, Marianne and Juliane is based on the life of Gudrun Ensslin and her sister Charlotte. Though supporting the same causes, the sisters have a wide divergence of opinion about how to achieve their aims. Juliane (Jutta Lampe) is a feminist reporter who believes that social change can be achieved through political channels while her sister Marianne (Barbara Sukowa) is a member of a terrorist group and believes that violence is justified by the righteousness of her cause. Ms. von Trotta assumes that the viewer has some knowledge of the historical context and does not show specific incidents of direct action or even the source of the group's disaffection. Rather the film is a character study of the two sisters and how Marianne's radical activities affected the people around her. As the film opens, Marianne has left her husband and has gone underground as an urban terrorist. Her ex-husband Werner visits Julianne to persuade her to care for their young son Jan telling her that he has accepted a position in Bali for one year and cannot take Jan with him. Juliane, who lives with her long time companion Wolfgang (Rudiger Vogler) is unsympathetic and tells him that she can only accept Jan for a few days, that arrangements must be made to place the boy in a foster home. Soon after we learn that Werner has committed suicide. The story is told using episodic flashbacks that cut in and out of present time, often disrupting the narrative flow. We see the sisters in various stages of their childhood and adolescence in a conservative household where their father was a rigid Presbyterian minister. One flashback depicts how viewing films of the Holocaust in school impacted them deeply. Juliane's compassion leads her to try to prevent Marianne from continuing her unproductive rage but she is not successful. Marianne is arrested, presumably for her part in a bombing campaign, and sent to prison where she is kept separate and apart from the other prisoners. Although Marianne recognizes that her sister is her last remaining contact with the outside world, she rejects Juliane's attempt at support through her magazine and goes on a hunger strike, protesting the group's isolation. When Marianne refuses to back down or compromise, the result is sad but inevitable. At the end, Juliane calls her sister an exceptional woman yet the film does not show us much evidence of this. Although I'm inclined to believe it is true, von Trotta depicts Marianne as rigid and doctrinaire and clearly leaves the impression that any attempt to foment violent revolution in a consumer-driven society is doomed to fail. In any event, what does emerge clearly, however, is the bond of love and support between each sister, brought to life by the magnificent performances of Jutta Lampe and Barbara Sukowa who render their characters with psychological insight and emotional truth.

Reviewed by AdGuzman00 10 / 10 / 10

Cannot find better drama intertwined with the political as fine as this!

Politics at the core of this intense and emotional depiction of fraternal love, support and the search for 'the' truth... And sometimes dismantling the intricate apparatus of power is of not use, perhaps a depressing view but an accurate one, as Marianne's dubious dead hints. Apart from the dark glimpse on systems of power in modern society that the film shows, it was such a delight to enjoy the astonishing performances of these two women, the casting of their younger selves (as teenagers and little girls) was spot on. I could relate better with Juliane's approach to women's right conviction, but something tells me that perhaps to achieve greater advances Marianne's fire for the cause is what is needed at times. For me, Marianne's conviction as an adult, and cheeky behavior as a young woman was enticing and contagious, but Juliane's gentle soul was lovely and engaging, the cause for her is built from woman to woman, with sorority at the center, supporting each other, establishing strong bonds, and for that same reason I think her role is even a little more hopeful.

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