Bittere Ernte (Angry Harvest) - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Bittere Ernte (Angry Harvest) Reviews

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½ October 1, 2013
Monday, October 1, 2013

(1985) Angry Harvest/ Bittere Ernte
(In German with English subtitles)
DRAMA/ WAR

Adapted from Hermann H. Field novel centers on an old single impotent Austrian farmer during WWII secluding a middle aged Jewish lady into his secret cellar. At first, she resists his advances since she's assuming that her husband might still be alive but eventually gives in since she was exactly what he was looking for as a wife. I was involved until the end for the actions almost contradicts what viewers initially saw in much of the movie leaving with more questions than it gives viewers answers such as he could've informed her that her husband's still alive, if she didn't want to leave.

2 out of 4 stars
½ March 23, 2012
This 1985-86 Oscar nominee for Best Foreign Film (from Germany) stars Armin Mueller-Stahl whose work in Barry Levinson's "Avalon" I so admired. This is a very bizarre, dark, complex Holocaust tale of faith, guilt, lust, pain and survival.
Stahl and his co-star Elisabeth Trissenaar have a complicated, often confusing cinematic chemistry which can either engage or repulse the viewer.
This is a film not for the faint of heart. Elements of intrigue, deception, and an over-arching understanding of the central characters' differing religious beliefs will draw the viewer into this taut passionate tale.
March 12, 2012
A somewhat unconventional Holocaust story, centering around a conflicted man of questionable integrity who does a good deed for a wrong reason. The story is a bit uneven, but the acting is solid and the ending is ironic as it is thought-provoking. I'm surprised how little-known this movie is, it certainly deserves better.
Harlequin68
Super Reviewer
½ February 22, 2012
On the way back from visiting Mrs. Kaminska(Tilly Laurenstein), Leon(Armin Mueller-Stahl) stops for a rest, only to have his food stolen by Rosa(Elisabeth Trissenaar). Catching up to her, she passes out in his arms and he takes her back home with him. At first alarmed when he finds out that she is Jewish and having just escaped from a transport, he still decides to nurse her back to health, despite the risk. Anyway, he has more important things to confess to the priest like his constant masturbation. In return, he says that Leon needs to get married without bringing up his unmarried sister Pauline(Anita Hofer). At least Walden(Wolf Donner) comes along and asks Leon if he wants to do something for his fatherland which surely will get his mind off of everything else.

Even as it feels theatrically staged at times, "Angry Harvest" is still a compelling movie with one heck of an ending that ties everything together. The movie provides an incisive look at the perversity inside men's hearts. And outside of Leon's chastity(which causes a whole load of problems), this is not referring to anything sexual(The only time I have seen cupping in person had nothing to do with trying to lower a fever), but to a group of people, with one eye on a post-war world, expoiting and extorting Jews during World War II who are desperate to survive.(The movie takes place after the Germans lose at Stalingrad but otherwise this is a more complicated occupation than normal.) By contrast, Leon tries to be principled in attempting to do the right thing but is hampered by his inexperience at reading other people's signals.
January 28, 2010
The lesson here seems to be that captivity comes in many forms, and one is not necessarily any better than another. Leon, the "hero" of the story, is a bastard by any measurement, and one whose occasional bouts of guilt or compassion at first win your sympathy, but eventually only emphasize his uglier qualities. Rosa is a less interesting character, almost all victim, and its her lack of depth that lowers the film a bit. Overall, however, I found it more engaging than Europa Europa.
Super Reviewer
½ May 21, 2009
A very dark film about two people thrust together by circumstances far beyond their control and whose very survival depends an their ability to find a way to cohabit. Leon (Armin Mueller-Stahl) finds Rosa (Elisabeth Trissenaar), a Jew who has escaped from a German transport train, wandering in the woods. He offers her sanctuary in his basement and nurses her back to health. The film revolves around the accomodations, lies, and compromises that both must make in order to live amongst the fear of discovery and/or renunciation. Although he is not above bettering his position at the expense of others, Leon is at heart a good man, but with a violent streak. Rosa is trusting and compliant, but one wonders at times what motivates her other than simple fear of the consequences of a wrong move. Several scoundrels gravitate around Leon as he is now the wealthiest man in the district and this brings additional complications. A solid cast, a dreary atmosphere, and a story of a man torn between his desire to do good and his carnal desires, this film earns 3 and a half stars.
Super Reviewer
April 13, 2009
Not going to reveal anything here. See it!
Super Reviewer
April 10, 2009
nominated for best foreign film at the oscars
September 14, 2008
This is a well- acted but flawed film by Agnieszka Holland, her first film made in exile from Poland. Set in WWII, the film tells the story of Leon, a lonley farmer who finds a Jewish woman (Rosa) who escaped from a train deporting her to a concertation camp. While hiding her, Leon forces Rosa to have sex with him, and a strange relationship develops between the two of them. Ultimately, the film doesnâ??t work as a Holocaust drama as the relationship between Leon and Rosa comes across as too metaphorical, and through that relationship the film tries too hard to touch upon issues about gender, faith, and redemption that do not really explicate the historical situation of the Holocaust. Still, an interesting film, and perhaps it may have seemed more daring in 1985 than in 2007, especially considering how many brilliant Holocaust films and documentaries have been made in the years in between
August 2, 2008
Interesting take on gender relations and religious clashes in World War II stricken Poland. Emphasis on the moral struggle that one man undergoes and ultimately fails. Heart-wrenching ending.
½ April 10, 2007
[font=Arial][size=3]Will write whenever I get around to it.[/size][/font]
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