Sunday, February 8, 2009

Berlinale - Day 3

Berlinale disrupted by "Storm."

German director Hans-Christian Schmid has cemented his place as a world-class filmmaker and raised the stakes with his latest fiction film, "Storm." Tackling an international justice issue at the heart of foreign relations in war torn regions around the World, we follow the trial of a war time commander of the Yugoslavian National Army at The Criminal Tribunal at The Hague.

Schmid has always possessed a natural ability to put you inside and on the edge of his characters skin, and now with "Storm" he proves that he can create an engaging political thriller.

The scripts greatest asset is that it treats the subject in full and does not create easy solutions or answers for dramatic effect. It brings up the right questions, even if it can't answer them all.

Made with the approval of the tribunal, the film showcases the court in all of its complexity. While doing justice to the people who work for the court, it also looks very closely at the court's purity. The tremendous pressure the judges and attorneys are under when a verdict against a past injustice has unwanted ramifications in the present is palpable throughout the film.

In the end, I merely hope that "Storm" will have a chance to be seen by more people than his previous effort, the criminally under-appreciated "Requiem."

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