Escape to Life: The Erika and Klaus Mann Story (2002) - Rotten Tomatoes

Escape to Life: The Erika and Klaus Mann Story (2002)

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Movie Info

Erika Mann and her brother Klaus Mann were the oldest children of renowned German author Thomas Mann; while the siblings strove to earn the love and approval of their father, the elder Mann was a cold and distant person, and Erika and Klaus came to depend upon each other for the emotional support they did not receive from their parents -- so much so that they often referred to themselves as twins, even though they were actually born a year apart. As they grew to adulthood, Klaus went on to a successful career as a writer, and Erika also distinguished herself in literature while making a name for herself as an actress. The Mann siblings were also outspoken pacifists and anti-fascists, and both were homosexual, two factors which would complicate their lives in Europe in the 1930s, with little respite when Erika emigrated to England and Klaus to the United States. Escape to Life: The Erika and Klaus Mann Story combines vintage photographs, a rare interview with Erika Mann, and dramatic re-creations of events from the lives of Klaus and Erika, as well as readings from their works by Vanessa Redgrave and Corin Redgrave. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi

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Cast

Corin Redgrave
as Klaus Mann
Vanessa Redgrave
as Erika Mann
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Critic Reviews for Escape to Life: The Erika and Klaus Mann Story

All Critics (7) | Top Critics (3)

Weiss and Speck never make a convincing case for the relevance of these two 20th-century footnotes.

March 28, 2002 | Full Review…
Village Voice
Top Critic

Why make a documentary about these marginal historical figures? Wouldn't one about their famous dad, author of Death in Venice, etc., be more valuable?

March 28, 2002 | Rating: 1.5/4
New York Post
Top Critic

The re- enactments, however fascinating they may be as history, are too crude to serve the work especially well.

March 28, 2002 | Full Review…
New York Times
Top Critic

Weiss and Speck capture the rich, turbulent tapestry of the Manns' lives.

March 29, 2002 | Full Review…
Film Journal International

An interesting, if not entirely successful, biography of two extraordinary personalities.

March 28, 2002 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
TV Guide

It's a bad sign when you're rooting for the film to hurry up and get to its subjects' deaths just so the documentary will be over, but it's indicative of how uncompelling the movie is unless it happens to cover your particular area of interest.

March 28, 2002

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