Screening “The Educators” followed by Discussion with Sahrul Aksa – German Film Club, Collaboration between KKF & Goethe Institut, Monday, 2 April 2012, at 7 pm, at Performance Space KKF (2nd fl)By kedaikebun • Mar 29th, 2012 • Category: Events
Movie Screening “The Educators (Die Fetten Jahre Sind Vorbei)”
Followed by discussion with Sahrul Aksa (Anthropologist and film reviewer)
Monday, 2 April 2012
At 7:00 pm
Venue Performance space (2nd floor) KKF
Open for public and FREE
The Educators (Die fetten Jahre sind vorbei)
Director: Hans Weingartner, 126 min., 2003/2004
Cast: Daniel Brühl, Julia Jentsch, Stipe Erceg, Burghard Klaußner
Jan and Peter share a flat in Berlin, a Volkswagen bus, and ideas on how to act against social injustice in the world: They break in luxury mansions when the owners aren’t home – not to steal anything, but to re-arrange the furniture and leave notes, such as “You have too much money” or “Your days of plenty are numbered”, and sign themselves as “The Edukators”. Peter’s girlfriend Jule has just lost her flat because she fell behind with the rent, and moves in with Peter and Jan. She has a casual job in an expensive restaurant to pay off enormous debts – in a road accident she wrecked the car of a rich businessman (Hardenberg), and now she has to pay for the damage.
While Peter is on a short trip abroad, Jan and Jule become closer. Jan tells her about their campaign against the super rich and lets her talk him into going to Hardenberg’s mansion. At the end of their ‘mission’ they throw a designer sofa into the pool and hastily scarper when the alarm goes off. Jule, however, has left her mobile phone behind. Jan and Jule go back inside and are caught by Hardenberg. Jan knocks him down, and calls Peter for help, as the situation threatens to get completely out of hand. The trio kidnap the businessman and take him to a mountain hut in the Tyrol. There, the kidnappers and their victim have long discussions: Hardenberg reveals that he was a student activist in 1968, a committee-member of the Socialist Student Union, and a friend of Rudi Dutschke (the Union’s most prominent spokesperson). He tells them he disapproves of the kidnap, but respects their idealism. From this point on, a mutual understanding seems to be developing. In the meantime, Hardenberg maliciously hints of Jan and Jule’s relationship to the unsuspecting Peter. The subsequent rift does not last long – and they know it is time to end the kidnap. They take Hardenberg back to his mansion. However, his conciliatory words are not to be trusted.
THE EDUKATORS was not only a success in Germany, but was also the first German film in eleven years to be included in the Cannes film competition. The film was shot exclusively with two handheld digital cameras, which followed the actors and only took positions that a human observer would have. Weingartner tells the story from an eyewitness’s point of view and in this way creates a subconscious complicity between the viewer and the film’s heroes. From the very beginning one senses the personal closeness of the director to the characters and their story. “THE EDUKATORS has a lot to do with the last ten years of my life, in which I repeatedly tried to become politically active, and repeatedly failed. I became a punk when punk was already over. I became a squatter when that was coming to an end. I think we live in a time when lots of young people want to see political change but don’t know how to bring it about”, Hans Weingartner explains. THE EDUKATORS is one of the most convincing works so far about a young German generation, which is all too often dismissed as superficial.