Everyone Else [Alle Anderen]
Maren Ade, 2009
#8, 2010 Skandies

So Gitti is dating Chris, and Chris has an acquaintance named Hans, and Hans is married to Sana. That means that Sana is, to Gitti, just some random. The four of them are chatting after dinner, and Sana tells the others about the "crazy dream" she'd had the night before — something about a giraffe. "I was so afraid!" she says, but Gitti is unimpressed and makes a catty remark about the dream's lack of profundity. The others are irked by her bad manners, which is understandable. But it's also understandable why Gitti might feel that way. What's more boring than some random person's dream?

Sana is pregnant. To her and her husband, this is world-shaking news. Their lives are about to be utterly transformed. But over a hundred million babies are born every year. There is little that is more commonplace than some random couple having a child. One thing that does qualify is some random couple breaking up, which is what Everyone Else is about. The movie begins with Gitti telling Chris's niece, who seems to dislike her, that "if you can't stand someone, me for example, it's not all that bad. It's only bad if you don't tell me. Because then I don't even know if it's something I can change or not." Gitti and Chris then spend two hours of screen time going through the rituals of being a couple while clumsily trying to get a feel for whether the other one has fallen out of love. From the reviews I've read, those who really liked this film have mainly been impressed by observations it makes about deteriorating relationships that they recognize from life but haven't seen in a movie before. But while I too have been in a deteriorating relationship, the details were different enough that there were no real shock-of-recognition moments here. And the movie didn't give me any reason to care about these people — they weren't likeable or even interesting. It was two random people breaking up. Undoubtedly very important to those people, but to me, not so much.

Anyway, I gotta go hop over to my minutiae page now and write about this dream I had.

comment on
comment on
comment on
return to the
Calendar page