© Polyband/24 Bilder

Michael Kohlhaas
France/Germany 2013

Opening 12 Sep 2013

Directed by: Arnaud des Pallières
Writing credits: Christelle Berthevas, Arnaud des Pallières, Heinrich von Kleist
Principal actors: Mads Mikkelsen, Mélusine Mayance, Delphine Chuillot, David Kross, Bruno Ganz

The proud and happy Michael (Mads Mikkelsen) is stopped on his way to the horse market in Leipzig by the new owner of the next royal landlord. The landlord confiscates two horses and the trainer. When Kohlhaas returns, the two beauties have been misused as working horses and the trainer beaten. Kohlhaas is outraged and wants justice at all costs.

Based on the German nouvelle written in the early 1800s by Heinrich von Kleist, it not only speaks for the injustices that took place in the sixteenth century but also reveals a modern political character on an individual level. Michael Kohlhaas is charismatic but fanatical in his beliefs of justice. He is willing to even cross over to the criminal side of terrorism, anything in order to achieve justice. If you love horses and a beautiful atmosphere, the cinematography is wonderful. The acting is also done to perfection. I was not completely satisfied with the editing since about halfway into the movie they suddenly spoke German, and it seemed to come out of nowhere. There were clues that led to the fact that the lawyer (Bruno Ganz) and Michael Kohlhaas were bilingual and needed to speak another language. The film did entice me to want to read this nouvelle since it is a modern theme which we see now in our political world. (Shelly Schoeneshoefer)

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