The energy of Sebastian Meise’s subdued jail drama comes not from massive, brash moments however from refined particulars. Sound design that hints on the aching vacancy outdoors the body and past the partitions. A bruised mild, which provides the whole lot and everybody a half-dead pallor. And Franz Rogowski’s exceptional, contained efficiency as Hans Hoffman, a homosexual man who spends a lot of his life in jail, persecuted for his sexuality in accordance with paragraph 175 of the German penal code.
Time ceases to have the identical that means behind bars, however due to a putting bodily transformation, Rogowski guides us via a nonlinear storyline spanning 1945 – Hans is launched from a focus camp solely to be imprisoned instantly for the crime of his homosexuality – to 1969 and the repeal of paragraph 175. Hans’s incarcerations repeatedly reunite him with Viktor (Georg Friedrich), a one-time cellmate whose preliminary hostility evolves into one thing deeper. A exceptional closing shot could be learn two methods: a spirit so damaged that freedom is not an choice, or a daring, reckless assertion of affection?