Run Lola Run

Lola jonathanrosenbaum.netPhoto: jonathanrosenbaum.net

We watched Lola Rennt (Run Lola Run, 1998) the other night. I hadn’t seen it in sixteen years. Back then, it was hailed as something amazing: an enjoyable German film.

You’re not sure at the start if it will stand the test of time. You wonder about those animation bits, about the Sepp Herberger quotes, and you squirm when she shrieks and glass breaks. You even wonder at the start if the techno soundtrack is going to work still. But all works. It feels like a glorious debut. The simplicity is captivating. This is the emergence of something totally new and young and fresh, carried out with minimum expense by enthusiastic outsiders who know that they are destined to become the mainstream, the establishment one day.

Franka Potente and Moritz Bleibtreu are perfect (as is Lola’s father, Herbert Knaup). And Tom Twyker – he wrote the script, he directed the film. It was his vision, his playfulness, his thoughtfulness. I wanted to be told afterwards that all of these people went on to great things, that they overran German cinema with their dynamism – but, I think that didn’t happen. I think instead they all went on to reasonably good things.

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