Revanche Reviews

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May 2, 2015
"Revanche" belongs to a particular style in the European filming, where the building of the characters is one of the main tasks of the director. It is a psycho drama but far away from the blockbuster type. It reminded me of Bergman´s films.
April 11, 2015
A satisfying and masterful cinematic work.
½ February 14, 2015
Often misrepresented as a thriller, Revanche is instead a slow-burning drama about confronting inevitability and finding redemption through self-confession. Austrian director Götz Spielmann weaves an affecting portrait of lives gone awry, marked by unforeseen tragedy and the redemptive search for catharsis. The film begins in a squalid section of Vienna, settling on two characters (a pusher and a prostitute) as they make a last-ditch effort to escape their station in life, where the promise of freedom is just one crime away. The gun's not even loaded. Nothing can go wrong. But life doesn't always go according to plan. Spielmann's film is preoccupied with human suffering and human mistakes but he's never judgmental. His film is dour, but it's never hopeless. What feels like fatalism in the earlier segments slowly blossoms into something like hope, as the characters come to terms with their own frailty and learn to forgive themselves. The title means "Revenge," but who do you blame when your life doesn't go according to plan? Spielmann's prescription comes with a hefty dose of introspection.
October 26, 2014
O que demarca "Revanche" dos restantes thrillers é uma qualidade meditativa que toma sempre o seu tempo para decidir que destino quer dar a cada um dos personagens (e é fácil criar uma relaçăo com grande parte deles). Embora seja bastante lento o ritmo que Götz Spielmann impőe no seu híbrido de noir e tragédia, o que encontramos aqui é uma narrativa demasiado tensa e bem articulada para que alguém se aborreça.
½ October 16, 2014
Another good Austrian film with no heirs or graces. Despite you thinking this might be a hard hitting seedy thriller at the start, the second half is slow-paced and gets pretty deep into the mind of a character who, at the start, you wouldn't think was interesting enough.
April 6, 2014
Great Austrian cinema with stunning performances. This Oscar-nominated movie has it all: love, sex, suspense and a beautiful setting that sometimes makes you feel comfortable and concerned at the same time. In addition it masterfully depicts the contrast between city and country without really concentrating on this issue. Highly recommendable for everyone who enjoys European filmmaking!
March 7, 2014
different; oddly romatic. a nice twist on the contemporary crime genre
½ December 29, 2013
A quietly fascinating journey of the hearts, from seedy to sublime, revenge to redemption, grief to giving unbeknown to all players--Good choices, bad choices!!
December 17, 2013
yeah i thought this was awesome

why are austrian films so depressing
November 28, 2013
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March 3, 2011
starts off as a traditional heist film but it soon evolves into something totally different and wonderful , terrific acting, interesting characters and beautifully shot as well...........
September 8, 2013
Can't wait to see more from Spielmann, if it's even remotely like this.
July 19, 2013
REMARKABLE. Absolutely fucking floored me. A film that reminded me as to why I fell in love with cinema in the first place. The director had a clear vision and boy did it show. So many themes and subtle topics raised in this film, but never with pretension. One of the best films I've seen this year.
½ June 17, 2013
"Revanche," Austria's 2009 nominee for the Best Foreign Language Film, is a structured, yet unpredictable psychological thriller. What starts out as a slightly off- putting investigation of human amorality, becomes a galvanizing psychological thriller worthy of repeat viewings. Writer/director Götz Spielmann reveals himself to the cinematic community and movie goers to be a fantastic storyteller, and a master of his craft.

"Revanche" is a slow, methodical film, much like its lead character Alex (Johannes Krisch), who decides to rob a bank with his girlfriend, Tamara (Irina Poapenko). Tamara wants out for the prostitution business and away from her pimp, Konecy (Hanno Poschl), and Alex is riddled in debt and works in Konecy's brothel as a bodyguard. He doesn't like seeing Koncey makes the moves on his women. Despite Alex's plan, the robbery goes wrong, and when speeding away from the scene, police officer Robert (Andreas Lust), shoots--aiming for the tires, but instead kills Tamara.

Tamara emerges as more intelligently connected to reality than her lover, the brothel tough guy, Alex. He is all sternness and hard talk - yet the surface hardness is just weak rebellion against his essential humanity. Later in the film, the police officer, Robert and his wife are introduced. Ursula Strauss, as the wife, gives a brilliant portrait of a woman whose practiced glibness is simply a smoke screen--disguising her dark impulses and emotions. The retaliations between these people develop subtly and indirectly, rather than any sort of bang-bang climax. Characters are intimately observed; their actions frequently say volumes more than their words. Eventually some characters come to know how everyone fits into this giant puzzle. The movie completely shifts gears when Robert and Alex meet. Only one of them knows the whole situation. Their meeting completely alters the course of the film.

Though his screenplay is sparse in dialogue, Spielmann directs his actors to rich performances. Explorations of loneliness and the nature of coincidence are camouflaged by a surprisingly cohesive narrative that features realistic and often unnerving character interactions. Much is asked of these actors, given that their characters are often unflattering, weak, and entirely human. These people find their lives intersecting without them knowing it. In "Revanche," which translates as "revenge" in English, the evolving situation becomes more morally complex.

"Revanche" means to move at a slower pace, allowing contemplation for the audience- -though it could have used a bit more "punch" at times to liven things up. Throughout the film, Spielmann remains in tight control of his story, creating moments of suspense, shifting dynamics on a dime, and presenting us with reversals of expectations, that seem, in retrospect, inevitable.
½ May 8, 2013
An impeccable setup let down by plodding scenes of chopping wood and in your face symbolism, Revanche hits hard in the first act but gives up for the remainer.
May 27, 2012
Spellbinding. Just don't expect a thriller.
April 6, 2013
A bit artsy at times--holding scenes longer than usual, outdoor pans of lovely scenery. If it had been an American film it would have lacked credulity but somehow more nuanced because it's European? Probably not but I bought it. I liked its subtletry and pathos and how the charactars become trapped by their own secrets and needs and wind up in an incredibly complex web of mutual Insanity with each playing a role he or she would never have thought possible.
March 28, 2013
exceptional direction and editing - paced and shot perfectly; The doorway motif and the "one shot/one scene" approach convey the trapped and fleeing emotional pull - reminds me of classic Japanese style. Everything i s deliberate and calculated. a great dichotomy of the chaos of the main characters beginnings.
½ March 17, 2013
clever script + a well done film, gratifying watch!
this was one of 'em quiet little gems; no flash, no splash, just a story well executed and told.
another one up for european cinema.
January 9, 2013
There are a lots of films that have dealt with the topic of revenge in recent years but I'm not sure I've ever seen it done quite like this. This isn't a Mel Gibson or Bruce Willis revenge flick. This is a simple and emotional part thriller part psychological drama, something that many films of the same ilk do not have. It's also a strikingly shot film, as beautiful cinematography makes this slow burning morality tale into quite a character study. The relationships between all of the characters are well carved and executed in a naturalistic way. The film that takes the main character and have him perform routine chores, like chopping wood, with incredibly long takes and no dialogue, just the inner workings of the character and the images in the frame, but still it makes them feel so important. This is wonderfully executed, and I found myself so fascinated that the running time felt much shorter than it was, despite the slow pacing. My only gripe with this one is the absence of a score. A musical score in the right mood could make the images much more powerful. Still, I highly recommend Revanche to anyone who can appreciate a slow burn film like this as a counter to the standard Hollywood revenge films. This is bold filmmaking that will resonate with you long after it's over.
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