Emotionally devastating. This post-Holocaust German film defies categorization. Set in ravaged postwar Berlin, Nelly (played immaculately by Nina Hoss), a Jewish singer, returns as a facially disfigured concentration camp survivor, searches for her husband, Johnny (Ronald Zehrfeld), a piano player, who is suspected of betraying her to the Nazis. Nina Kunzendorf is empathic as Nelly's candid, loyal friend with no illusions about the events that transpired. After undergoing reconstructive surgery, Nelly finds Johnny working in a nightclub, but he doesn't recognize her. Nelly assumes the identity of a doppelganger, at her husband's request, to bequeath her inheritance to him and split the sum. This seemingly preposterous conceit never feels contrived under the deliberately assured direction of Christian Petzold. It plays as a sophisticated mystery with the style of a noir like "The Third Man." The exquisite cinematography by Hans Fromm features dark shadows and symbolic framing. Nelly's transformation into her former self suggests "Vertigo" in reverse. In its execution, the haunting, ambiguous ending is perfection. Petzold examines the complex psychological state of postwar Germany suffering with identity, deception, denial, and guilt. This is a rare contemporary movie that assumes the audience's intelligence. It makes you conscious of how simplistic and manipulative other movies on this subject are. A lyrical song titled "Speak Low" is played at crucial moments to lingering effect. Music is by Kurt Weill. Co-written by Petzold and Harun Farocki, loosely based on the novel "Return from the Ashes" by Hubert Monteilhet, which was filmed before as a British film in 1965.