Eye For Film >> Movies >> Heil (2015) Film Review
Reviewed by: Richard Mowe
Giving a light-hearted and satirical spin to the rise of neo-Nazism in Germany could have been asking for trouble but writer/director Dietrich Brüggemann (who made Stations Of The Cross) just about pulls it off.
Certainly there will be those who take offence - but that’s part of the objective in shaking up politically correct preconceptions.
Brüggemann bases the film loosely on actual events, suggesting that German attitudes since the Second World War have not really change that much. The citizens just become more adept at hiding or disguising their prejudices.
The setting is Prittwitz, a small town which adjoins three German states. Three organisations have each hired informants to monitor right-wing activity in the area.
Meanwhile the chief of police insists that his officers should go easy on the skinheads - or at the very least avoid mentioning neo-nazi as a description in any arrests, to avoid the town becoming tainted by negative vibes.
When a peace activist with African roots arrives in town, he is promptly kidnapped (by the incompetent duo of Kalle and Johnny) and then brainwashed after a heavy blow to his head with a blunt instrument. Now he will spout anything that is thrown in his direction and makes the ideal stooge to be paraded to talk about immigrants.
Brüggemann magics up a lot of knock-about humour which is readily accessible even if some of the political in-jokes may pass over the heads of non-Germans.Reviewed on: 06 Jul 2015