March 2021 – ANAMNESIS – Reviews after the Berlinale screening
ANMAßUNG is, superficially, a film about creating Stefan’s image. Behind the curtain, it’s also about the filmmakers’ preoccupation with crafting a particular image of themselves. Where there’s a puppet, there’s always a master, strings attached. (Aimee Knight, fipresci.org)
There’s plenty to puzzle over in ANAMNESIS. (Scott Roxborough, Hollywood Reporter)
One of Berlinale Forum’s most interesting titles, ANMAßUNG (ANAMNESIS) ventures into the mind of a killer. (Steve Rickinson, filmsinframe.com)
The film creates a real discomfort. (Olivier Bachelard, abusdecine.com)
Really impressive! Images that you can’t forget… Ignoring the difficult facets of human existence has never been Chris Wright’s or Stefan Kolbe’s thing. (Radio1) Chris talks to Knut Elstermann on Radio1
This cleverly staged film sends the viewer on a journey into human abysses that oscillates between pity and disgust. (Christian Berndt, Deutschlandfunk )
The film by Wright and Kolbe turns out to be particularly clever when it comes not so much to examining the crime itself as the process of theoretical reconstruction by which we normally distinguish between authenticity and lies. (Francesca Pistocchi, close-up.it )
Chris Wright and Stefan Kolbe’s ANAMNESIS – one of the titles taking part to the Forum strand of this year’s Berlinale – is an intense and incredibly puzzling exploration of the life of an ice-cold woman killer, Stefan S. … Kolbe and Wright take us on a 111-minute-long maieutic journey to discover the inscrutability of moral evil. And that’s more than enough to make for a great documentary film. (Davide Abbatescianni, cineeuropa.org )
The brittle form of a distanced, never moralizing narrative is fascinating – and it not only provides insights into everyday prison life and the psyche of a murderer, but also into the basic problems of documentary work. (Stefan Grissemann, profil.at )
So the film is a multifaceted attempt at decentering, but it is precisely the repeated attempts, the attempts to involve the puppet and the directors, the movements back and forth, the breaking up of the chronology, the sometimes very deliberate refusal of illustration that also leads to a melodramatization of the relationship to the object, to the subject. That’s not meant as a criticism; this ambivalence has real strengths. This approximation is and will not be a well-rounded affair. It remains a presumption to want to understand. You don’t have a good feeling about anything. But it would be completely wrong to have good feelings about such a story. (Ekkehard Knörer, cargo.de )
This docu-film is truly disturbing, because it seems to solicit in the viewer the answers to the many Hamletic questions and doubts. … However difficult it is to watch in places, this film deserves an award. Maybe that of goodwill and positivist idealism on the destiny of every human being. (Dimitri Buffa, opinione.it)
Sometimes alienation techniques are not only necessary to be able to see the known with new eyes. They can also make explicit the maker’s position in relation to his subject. An extreme example of this is Anamnesis, in which a portrait of a murderer is created by, among other things, the use of a puppet operated by two puppeteers. But actually there is not a single shot in that film that is just a straightforward shot. Again and again the camera comes into view, people reflect on what they see and film, spaces are stretched by the use of glass walls or other reflections and duplications. (Dana Linssen, The Filmkrant)
The viewer is literally swamped by the most insignificant details of dreary everyday life in a gray, empty world. ANAMNESIS is an immensely boring film and maybe that’s exactly what it wants to be. The case of Stefan S. is as terrifying as it is typical. He’s not an interesting person, without his murder nobody would talk about him. His deed is evil, it is banal. (Lucas Barwenczik, filmstarts.de)
Feb 2021 – ANAMNESIS is finished and will have its world premiere in the Forum of the Berlinale!
Nov 2020 – Matthias Dell and Sven Illgner have written new texts reflecting on the controversy caused by our film DAS BLOCK at the Duisburger Filmwoche in 2007. They are part of new website celebrating four decades of the festival’s legendary discussions, a central part of the Duisburg experience and much longer, more passionate and more uncomfortable than typical Q-and-As. Cristina Nord also wrote about the controversy in her text “What is Dignity?”, published in the book “AusSichten – Öffentliches Reden über Dokumentarfilm”.
Nov 2019 – Five years after our film PRIESTS (PFARRER), the magazine Zeitzeichen met up with the protagonists to see how their lives have progressed.
April 2012 – The Arsenal in Berlin staged a retrospective of our work. The newspaper taz wrote about it with an article entitled The Magic of Recognition and das Neue Deutschland with The End of Work.
Oct 2010 – We didn’t win the prestigous Konrad-Wolf-Prize of Berlin’s Academy of Arts. Béla Tarr did. Matthias Dell, Jutta Brückner and Thomas Heise had something to say about that in the newspaper Freitag.
Dec 2010 – The critic Silvia Hallensleben put THE HOME (KLEINSTHEIM) second on her list of best films of the year in Tagesspiegel.