Love, Fate, and the Autobahn — 6 years ago
I just watched this earlier this evening. It was the first film shown this semester for the German Film Series at the University of Kentucky. I’m taking German 101 this semester, which is how I found out about the series, and we are getting extra credit for watching the films, so that’s a plus.
=(Partial) Plot Summary=
(Don’t worry, I don’t give away the ending away)
The film begins in medias res, with a solar eclipse, a corpse in the trunk of a car, and Daniel (Moritz Bleibtreau) hitching a ride from Isa (Mehmet Kurtulus) along a dusty road. As they drive, Daniel tells his story to Isa, bringing the viewer up to date as well with what is actually the majority of the film.
Daniel is a student teacher in Hamburg, heading home at the beginning of the summer holiday. He buys a ring from Juli (Christiane Paul) at a street stall, and with it she tells him that he will meet a girl with the symbol of the sun (as on the ring), and that is whom he is destined to be with. As he leaves, she gives him a flier for a party that evening, hoping to see him there.
At the party, Daniel sees a girl with a sun on her shirt, and is entranced. She introduces herself as Melek (Idil Üner), and asks if he knows of a cheap place to spend the night. They converse, and Daniel shows her around Hamburg, eventually inviting her to stay the night in his apartment. However, just as they left the party, Juli arrives, wearing a shirt with a sun on it, and sees them walking away.
The next day, Juli is alongside the road, hitchhiking out of town in her disappointment. She decides that the first car two stop will decide her destination. As it so happens, Daniel, after droppinh Melek off at the airport and now on his way to Istanbul to see her again, sees Juli on the side of the road and stops, offering her a ride. She gets in, and they drive off in a good deal of romantic tension, beginning their travels across Europe.
This film was introduced as “just an entertainment film, nothing heavy, nothing philosophical or srt-driven,” and that’s exactly what it was. A light romantic-comedy/road-trip movie with a fairly episodic plot, I found it quite entertaining. Bleibtreu gives a great portrayal of unassertive student teacher, with all his idiosyncracies (adjusting his glasses, repeatedly attempting some sort of request), driven by love to become more confident. Paul is cute as Juli, with her ploys to get Daniel to fall for her, and her charm fits her character. Overall, nothing spectacular, and film’s resolution can be seen from a mile away, but it’s so satisfying once it happens, and so much fun along the way, that I really enjoyed this movie.