Shifting the Blame (Schuld sind immer die anderen)
Awards: Best Main Actor - Edin Hasanovic (Sao Paolo 2013)
Germany, 2012, color, 90 minutes, German with English subtitles
Director: Lars-Gunnar Lotz Screenplay: Anna Maria Prassler Producers: Matthias Drescher, Philipp Knauss Cast: Edin Hasanovic, Julia Brendler, Marc Ben Puch, Pit Bukowski, Natalia Rudziewicz Sales: FFL Film- und Fernseh-Labor Ludwigsburg (Ludwigsburg, Germany)
Discussion with director Lars-Gunnar Lotz follows both screenings.
In an industrial section of Stuttgart, masked young criminal Benjamin Graf (Edin Hasanovic) and his accomplice carjack a woman, beating her unmercifully after she makes an ATM withdrawal for them. Not long afterwards, Ben is jailed on another charge and seems destined to be a career recidivist before social worker Niklas (Marc Benjamin Puch) persuades him to attend a rural camp for at-risk youth. After initially disrupting the group, Ben bears down and tries to fit in—until Niklas’ wife Eva returns from leave, and Ben discovers she’s the woman he assaulted. At once a compassionate tale of hard-fought redemption and a tense, cold thriller, Shifting the Blame manages the not inconsiderable feat of balancing the two dramatic tones with nary a misstep. And in Edin Hasanovic, who’s worked primarily in German television and had a supporting role in Feo Aladag’s 2011 Film/Neu opener When We Leave and in this program’s Life is Nothing for Cowards, director Lars-Gunnar Lotz has found an actor seemingly unafraid to unleash the ferocity that has consumed Ben. Winner of numerous German film awards and featured at many international film festivals, Shifting the Blame is an accomplished, effective and ultimately eye-opening drama.—Eddie Cockrell
Sunday, October 6, 3 pm