Review: Wellington Film Festival

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8 August, 2007 by rhesus12

The Film Festival is over and again I managed to avoid all but the unavoidable. These were I Served the King of England and Achtung Holgar! Actually, I made up Achtung Holgar! It is still my favourite of the whole festival though. Reviews (stars out of 5) follow.

Achtung Holgar!

German comedy from Bravarian existentialist Konrad Existentiellisct. In a nutshell, Holgar is a moon-faced simpleton who, in his murky past, may or may not have had sex with the village’s favourite breeding sow (alluded to in a courageously erotic cameo by our own Michael Galvin wearing a pig suit). For whatever reason, Holgar is forced out from his sleepy town and into the big city.

Not that you know much about this from Existentiellisct’s script other than in brief, kaleidoscopic flashbacks. Holgar’s past is not the point. The point is that he says things that spin the heads of the uptight, depressed Berlinners, who are always driving him out of their nightclubs and art galleries.

His technique is simple: Holgar says the opposite of what seems obviously true. If it is raining outside, Holgar will say it is sunny, and vice versa. Importantly, Holgar knows he is wrong. The question is whether he is mad (suspicions have been raised by the supposed pig incident and lynch mobs are assembled and dissolved throughout the film) or is something much deeper going on?

It is only when the hot English professor Julia Jentsch (who also starred in King of England) introduces a crazed Teutonic mob, via megaphone, to the concept of sarcasm that Holgar is saved. Mob chuckles, shakes collective head and wanders off down the piney road with greater insights into the nature of reality.

Rating: * Ludicrous.

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