Screened as part of NZIFF 2002

Something to Remind Me 2001

Toter Mann

Directed by Christian Petzold

Germany In German with English subtitles
90 minutes 35mm

Director, Screenplay


Hans Fromm


Bettina Böhler


Nina Hoss
André Hennicke
Sven Pippig


Rotterdam, Berlin 2002


Where the recent Lantana employed the investigation of a crime as a pretext to draw its audience gradually into the emotional lives of its mid-life characters, Something to Remind Me draws us to similarly unsettled characters almost instantly – and only gradually reveals the crime that binds them together. Securing our sympathetic interest in the tentative courtship of Thomas, a conscientious 40ish lawyer who has never married, and the equally relationship-wary Leyla, director Christian Petzold changes emotional gear into romantic thriller mode with imperceptible skill. Being manoeuvred through unexpected territory by such an expert navigator is the kind of pleasure that no true movie lover would wish to spoil by reading another word about the plot. A marvellously taut and involving film.

“The film’s icy-cool veneer works hand-in-hand with its Hitchcockian plotting, making for compelling entertainment… the drama is distinguished by its pressure-cooker tension, by Petzold’s assured, to-the-point direction and the cast’s tightly reined performances.” — David Rooney, Variety