The Days Between

The Days Between


Reviewed by: Angus Wolfe Murray

The days between what? Lynn's life has no structure. It's a waiting game. Lying in the bath for hours, smoking, and, one time, drinking a bottle of champagne. She's 22, works in a university canteen, has a boyfriend called David, who is training as an Olympic swimmer. When she wants sex, she asks him. He has a great body, but no sense of humour. He doesn't seem to care about anything except the training.

Koji (Hiroki Mano) is a Japanese student, trying to learn German. He's pretty useless. He starts following Lynn (Sabine Timoteo). Is he a stalker? He bicycles everywhere, lives by himself in a characterless tower block. He meets her finally and they get drunk. They watch airliners flying low across the night sky. He talks Japanese. "Feels good, your language," she says. And then she tells him what she used to do when she was younger: "I hid in my closet all day, waiting for someone to find me." He smiles, not understanding a word.

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There is an anger in Lynn that finds no expression, like she has been denied something, but can't remember what. She is hurt by the world, but no victim of it. She doesn't know what she wants and so flirts with Koji to get back at David. At the club, she releases pent up energy on the dance floor. Everything she does is sexy. It's part of her.

As a first feature, Maria Speth's film is astonishingly accomplished. The cinematography has an artistic shape that is never pretentious, every shot beautifully staged. The look is pristine, atmospheric, steely smooth.

The pace is slow. Emotions flame and die. Feelings run into walls. When fascination for the moment becomes frustrated, there is nothing left but the lonely city and these men who cannot communicate.

Eventually time drags. Love has no meaning here. The days between sleeping and falling down drunk in the street are short. Koji has a kind heart. Lynn knows this, but it makes no difference. Nothing does. That's the problem.

Reviewed on: 06 Mar 2002
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The frustrated sex life of a German canteen worker.

Director: Maria Speth

Writer: Maria Speth

Starring: Sabine Timoteo, Hiroki Mano, Florian Muller-Mohrungen, Sabina Riedel, Nicole Marischka

Year: 2001

Runtime: 118 minutes

Country: Germany


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