Der Amerikanische Freund (The American Friend) Reviews

  • Jan 10, 2021

    Wim Wenders' have done some amazing films and this one felt very promising with a cool plot and some very skilled actors. Jonathan (Bruno Ganz) is a picture frame worker. He is kind and gentle but have some business with people that are into art crime and that leads him into a world of being a hitman. He is in need of money as he has a blood disease and could have some extra cash for surgery. The film is done in a rather slow tempo. Nice music (I actually sampled the intro score for beats) and it looks very solid. I never gave it too much interest the first 30 minutes or so, but I digested the story pretty well. It's shot in New York, Paris and Hamburg so we do have a bit of travel to do here. Not that many stand out scenes, but straight forward movement and solid actors supported by a pleasant script makes it very watchable. This is mostly about character study. I could have hoped for some more entertainment at times but it works just fine the way it is. Not Wim's best, and thrillers is not his biggest line of style, but it's definitely not his worst either. This one kind of just dropped on me so I guess it's not his most famous work even if it premiered at Cannes back in 1977. 7 out of 10 frames.

    Wim Wenders' have done some amazing films and this one felt very promising with a cool plot and some very skilled actors. Jonathan (Bruno Ganz) is a picture frame worker. He is kind and gentle but have some business with people that are into art crime and that leads him into a world of being a hitman. He is in need of money as he has a blood disease and could have some extra cash for surgery. The film is done in a rather slow tempo. Nice music (I actually sampled the intro score for beats) and it looks very solid. I never gave it too much interest the first 30 minutes or so, but I digested the story pretty well. It's shot in New York, Paris and Hamburg so we do have a bit of travel to do here. Not that many stand out scenes, but straight forward movement and solid actors supported by a pleasant script makes it very watchable. This is mostly about character study. I could have hoped for some more entertainment at times but it works just fine the way it is. Not Wim's best, and thrillers is not his biggest line of style, but it's definitely not his worst either. This one kind of just dropped on me so I guess it's not his most famous work even if it premiered at Cannes back in 1977. 7 out of 10 frames.

  • Sep 19, 2020

    It's cool and freewheeling in that 70s kind of way. It must have been a real hoot for everyone involved in the making of it, but the overall effect for me was a small shrug of the shoulders. Giving cameos to great filmmakers does make a film itself great. It gained a half star for featuring Dennis Hopper in a cowboy hat and then having him comment on it.

    It's cool and freewheeling in that 70s kind of way. It must have been a real hoot for everyone involved in the making of it, but the overall effect for me was a small shrug of the shoulders. Giving cameos to great filmmakers does make a film itself great. It gained a half star for featuring Dennis Hopper in a cowboy hat and then having him comment on it.

  • Sep 08, 2020

    A perfect example of one artist (Wim Wenders) taking on the influence of another (Patricia Highsmith) and using it as a vehicle to express his own thoughts, ideas and influences (Bruno Ganz singing the Kinks?). Beautifully shot using Robby Muller's fantastic cinematography, the story may appear standard or strange to some. But to others, this is one of those unique cinematic experiences that gets better with each viewing.

    A perfect example of one artist (Wim Wenders) taking on the influence of another (Patricia Highsmith) and using it as a vehicle to express his own thoughts, ideas and influences (Bruno Ganz singing the Kinks?). Beautifully shot using Robby Muller's fantastic cinematography, the story may appear standard or strange to some. But to others, this is one of those unique cinematic experiences that gets better with each viewing.

  • Sep 02, 2020

    Framing. Art forgery. Gangsters. Mafia. Yes, this movie has it all, folks. Jonathon Zimmerman frames fine art for a living and is dying. Tom Ripley sells art forgeries for a living. Tom frames Jonathon to commit a murder for the gangster Minot for indeterminate reasons. One one murder turns into two murders, giving Tom regrets for indeterminate reasons. Lots of framing going on here. Johnny C sez check it out and if you figure out what the gangsters are really up to, let him know.

    Framing. Art forgery. Gangsters. Mafia. Yes, this movie has it all, folks. Jonathon Zimmerman frames fine art for a living and is dying. Tom Ripley sells art forgeries for a living. Tom frames Jonathon to commit a murder for the gangster Minot for indeterminate reasons. One one murder turns into two murders, giving Tom regrets for indeterminate reasons. Lots of framing going on here. Johnny C sez check it out and if you figure out what the gangsters are really up to, let him know.

  • Mar 28, 2020

    Wanted to like this, kinda liked it, but the psychological drivers behind the main characters start to fall apart and the film starts to suffer from what plagues mediocre crime films - an increasingly abstract and hard to follow plot. Towards the end I didn’t understand what was driving the characters and quite frankly stopped caring. Very cool imagery and a couple great sequences, but this film just doesn’t reward on all cylinders.

    Wanted to like this, kinda liked it, but the psychological drivers behind the main characters start to fall apart and the film starts to suffer from what plagues mediocre crime films - an increasingly abstract and hard to follow plot. Towards the end I didn’t understand what was driving the characters and quite frankly stopped caring. Very cool imagery and a couple great sequences, but this film just doesn’t reward on all cylinders.

  • Apr 07, 2019

    its about a dying man who becomes a hired killer, weird how the movie is 1/2 in german

    its about a dying man who becomes a hired killer, weird how the movie is 1/2 in german

  • May 27, 2018

    I'm delighted, a Wim Wenders film is always a good treat, this time it is multiplied by a deadly combination of Bruno Ganz and Dennis Hopper by whom any film contributes a lot. From its pretty simple plot derives a complex thriller that edges with noir and even existential drama, which acquires new heights by outstanding performances all around. The soundtrack thinly underlines the movie's subtle weirdness, which it is hard to pinpoint in what exactly it manifests itself.

    I'm delighted, a Wim Wenders film is always a good treat, this time it is multiplied by a deadly combination of Bruno Ganz and Dennis Hopper by whom any film contributes a lot. From its pretty simple plot derives a complex thriller that edges with noir and even existential drama, which acquires new heights by outstanding performances all around. The soundtrack thinly underlines the movie's subtle weirdness, which it is hard to pinpoint in what exactly it manifests itself.

  • Feb 17, 2018

    A slow development that has a some intricate filming and staging that was truly artistic. 1001 movies to see before you die.

    A slow development that has a some intricate filming and staging that was truly artistic. 1001 movies to see before you die.

  • Apr 14, 2017

    Solid but standard thriller.

    Solid but standard thriller.

  • Nov 06, 2016

    Wim Wenders creates an excellent film based on Patricia Highsmith's "Ripley's Game." Dennis Hopper plays Tom Ripley here and is quite good, but the film belongs to Bruno Ganz who is in one of my all-time favourite films "Wings of Desire", also directed by Wenders. This thriller is more about atmosphere than story, but that's okay as Wenders pulls it off. I was engaged throughout, even if at times I didn't fully understand what was happening. Definitely worth checking out!

    Wim Wenders creates an excellent film based on Patricia Highsmith's "Ripley's Game." Dennis Hopper plays Tom Ripley here and is quite good, but the film belongs to Bruno Ganz who is in one of my all-time favourite films "Wings of Desire", also directed by Wenders. This thriller is more about atmosphere than story, but that's okay as Wenders pulls it off. I was engaged throughout, even if at times I didn't fully understand what was happening. Definitely worth checking out!