Hannah Arendt

dir. Margarethe von Trotta, Germany/Luxembourg/France 2012, 113 min.



Although in the latest film by Margarethe von Trotta Hannah Arendt faces Adolf Eichmann, this is not a story of a confrontation of two strong characters. This is a portrait of a woman who alone, is trying to fight the demon of Germany's past and the damage this evil has caused - evil greater than the human mind can take. Arendt was not doing it with everyone's applause; she was surrounded by the critics of her actions, just as well as by people who wanted to argue with her, question her theories and oppose them. However, she remained adamant. She kept digging into what is intangible, vague and inscrutable - one man's evil, the evil times and the evil masses.

In this film, Hannah Arendt, surrounded by the fumes of cigarette smoke, is not more of a hero than the screen itself. Nor is Adolf Eichmann, run-down by the force of life, sitting on the other side of the barricade. And yet he, the monster from the old days, has the advantage, because he harbors a secret, which she cannot figure out, which fascinates her and keeps her uneasy. A mystery of impenetrable evil that had human life for nothing, drew from primal instincts; evil no one could ever get used to. For Arendt it was a source of a philosophical research.

Urszula Lipińska

Major festivals: Toronto International Film Festival 2012, Valladolid International Film Festival 2012, Göteborg Film Festival in 2013.