The weather's fabulous but there's nothing new under the sun in "Formentera," the sophomore outing of Teuton helmer Ann-Kristin Reyels ("Hounds").

The weather’s fabulous but there’s nothing new under the sun in “Formentera,” the sophomore outing of Teuton helmer Ann-Kristin Reyels (“Hounds”). Set on the titular Mediterranean island, pic follows a Danish-German couple that have left their child at home so they can have some time alone — and boy, do they need it. But instead of exploring the psychological damage that routine can wreak on relationships, Reyels saddles her protags with a sub-Antonioni mystery plot that distracts from rather than facilitates access to the characters’ emotions. Beyond German-lingo territories, Euro cable and some fests will bite.

Ben (ubiquitous Danish thesp Thure Lindhardt, “Keep the Lights On”) and Nina (Sabine Timoteo) stay with some superannuated hippies presided over by a friend (Geoffrey Layton) of Ben’s dad. They’re joined by pretty young thing Mara (Vicky Krieps), who’s awfully flirty with Ben; this sidelines the jealous Nina before Mara disappears in the waves. Swiss actress Timoteo (“Brownian Movement”) is best in show, while Lindhardt has a tendency to grimace. Tech credits are garden-variety, with the exception of a minutes-long shot in which the two finally face the truth.



  • Production: A Unafilm production, in association with ZDF, Arte, The Post Republic. Produced by Titus Kreyenberg. Directed by Ann-Kristin Reyels. Screenplay, Reyels, Antonia Rothe, Katrin Milhain.
  • Crew: Camera (color, HD), Henner Besuch; editor, Halina Daugird; music, Henry Reyels, Marco Baumgartner; production designer, Peter Weiss; costume designer, Manfred Schneider. Reviewed at Berlin Film Festival (Forum), Feb. 9, 2012. Running time: 94 MIN.
  • With: With: Thure Lindhardt, Sabine Timoteo, Tatja Seibst, Geoffrey Layton, Christian Brueckner, Vicky Krieps, Franc Bruneau, Ilse Ritter. (German, French, Spanish dialogue)