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Festival del Film Locarno 2006 - Pardo d'oro Cinéastes du Présent


Deutschland 2006 87'

Regie: Angelina Maccarone
Drehbuch: Susanne Billig
Kamera: Bernd Meiners
Ton: Dirk Homann
Schnitt: Bettina Böhler
Musik: Jakob Hansonis, Hartmut Ewert
Produktion: MMM Film GmbH
Mit: Maren Kroymann, Kostja Ullmann

A psychodrama about a sado-masochistic relationship between a woman in her fifties and a boy of sixteen, VERFOLGT takes the viewer into the heart of their affair. An independent woman of fifty, fully at ease with herself, Elsa has a comfortable and fulfilling life which seems to satisfy her. Her daughter has left home, and Elsa has a companionable relationship with her husband Raimar, and one that is open to dialogue. As a social worker looking after young delinquents, her working life is lively, interesting and provides a great deal of human contact. She is given the task of supervising Jan, a young man who has just been released from prison, and for whose reinsertion into society is to be responsible. Very quickly, the boy makes clear his powerful physical attraction to her. Shocked, and completely repressing her own attraction to him, Elsa asks her husband to keep him busy by taking him on at the garage where he works. Becoming fond of Jan, Raimar gradually draws him into the couple's private life. The ensuing intimacy leads Elsa to respond to Jan's advances and give rein to her buried desires: they then embark on a destructive affair. Resolutely avoiding any sense of voyeurism, Verfolgt reveals the fragility of characters caught up in a relationship that, in addition to transgressing social conventions, challenges their ability to manage their own lives. Candidly and painfully exposing the feelings that drive the characters, the film charts the protagonists' developing emotions, from Elsa's initial rejection of the adolescent's submissive stance to the growing sexual desire that she struggles to hold back. Although revealing how the desire to satisfy fantasies makes a lover into a selfish, cruel being, who loses all consideration for family and friends, Angelina Maccarone also uses sado-masochism to explore the weakness and vulnerability of these two individuals.