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Heart Over Head

Better known as the writing partner of director Hans-Christian Schmid ("Crazy"), Michael Gutmann takes the helm this time for another teen movie played out in middle-class Germany. A superior example of the genre, with attractive leads but no U.S.-style dumbing down, the wafer-thin will-they/won't-they story is tightly written and directed.

Better known as the writing partner of director Hans-Christian Schmid (“Crazy”), Michael Gutmann takes the helm this time for another of the team’s teen movies played out in middle-class Germany. A superior example of the genre, with attractive leads but no U.S.-style dumbing down, the wafer-thin will-they/won’t-they story is tightly written and directed, but with no sense of haste. Markets and foreign-language webs usually receptive to such fare should respond.

While visiting his elder sister (Anna von Berg) in Frankfurt, Jakob (Tom Schilling) falls for Polish au pair Wanda (Alicja Bachleda-Curus) and decides to stay on. She’s interested in him, but wary of making any commitment, especially as he has a strong anti-authoritarian streak and a petulant temper. Pic generally keeps a light tone, but shows a nice feel for the small embarrassments of teen life along with the usual sexual banter. Two leads have good chemistry and are surrounded by an interesting collection of supporting characters. Movie’s overall look is bright but not candy-colored.

Heart Over Head

Germany

  • Production: A Constantin Film release of a Claussen & Woebke Filmproduktion production. (International sales: Claussen & Woebke, Munich.) Produced by Thomas Woebke, Jakob Claussen. Directed by Michael Gutmann. Screenplay, Gutmann, Hans-Christian Schmid.
  • Crew: Camera (color), Pascal Hoffmann, Klaus Eichhammer; editor, Monika Abspacher; music, Rainer Michel; art directors, Marion Schlauss, Ingrid Henn; costumes, Ruth Loeffelholz. Reviewed at Berlin Film Festival (German Cinema), Feb. 15, 2002. Running time: 91 MIN.
  • With: <b>With:</b> Tom Schilling, Alicja Bachleda-Curus, Matthias Schweighofer, Sebastian Kroehnert, Anna Kalata, Anna von Berg, Marcello Mahr, Leonard Lansink, Katharina Mueller-Emlau, David Scheller, Clara Gutmann, Charlotte Gutmann.
  • Music By: