Reviewed by: Amber Wilkinson

Whatever happened to linear films with clear and concise plotting?

Antares is another nail in the coffin of brevity. It's a rambling tale of people connected by something tenuous, which is intended to add up to something significant. In this case, the link is the huge apartment complex where they all live.

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Alfred (Harry Prinz) and Eva (Petra Morze) are middle-class and middle-aged. Eva isn't getting her kicks at home, so she's taken on a lover, whose backstory we are thankfully spared. What we aren't spared, however, is sex and there's a lot of full-frontal action - letting the women in the audience in on exactly what it is Eva sees in Tomasz (Andreas Patton).

Elsewhere in the complex, Marco (Dennis Cubic) is a billboard poster putter upper (wonder if there's a real job title for that?). He lives with his paranoid and ultra jealous girlfriend Sonja (Suzanne Wuest) - which is handily just around the corner from his lover Nicole (Martina Zinner).

Nicole, unlike Tomasz, comes with enough backstory for two. She's trying to ditch her violent ex, who just won't take no for an answer.

The main problem with this is that it is simply too fragmented.

We get heaps of Eva and her well-hung man going at it like tongs before we cut to Marco and his life. Sadly, at this point, writer/director Gotz Spielmann pops the first plotline on the back burner for so long that by the time he gets back round to it you've almost forgotten it existed. This is annoying, but even more irritating is his desire to play around with the timeline. There is no good reason for the non-linear elements of this film. So what, if a couple of events occur simultaneously? Choosing not to cut between them, but rather expecting your audience to do your editing for you after the fact isn't big, or clever.

Also, Antares has no clear message, except possibly to be, as one of the characters says "pretty and sad, like life". The only revelation is just how many plot strands Spielmann thinks are necessary to achieve his goal of saying nothing.

Reviewed on: 23 Aug 2005
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Multi-layered plotlines around the inhabitants of an apartment complex.
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Director: Gotz Spielmann

Writer: Gotz Spielmann

Starring: Petra Morze, Andreas Patton, Hary Prinz, Susanne Wuest, Dennis Cubic, Martina Zinner, Andreas Kiendl

Year: 2004

Runtime: 119 minutes

Country: Austria


EIFF 2005

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