Film Fetish Friday: Discussing Hannah Arendt

Film Fetish Friday: Discussing Hannah Arendt

May 17, 2013 |  by  |  Art
About the author
As a freelance journalist, Anouk (26) usually writes about what other people do or like. In her precious spare time she watches arthouse films. Not a few. A lot, thanks to her trusted Cineville pass. Here she can finally share her film-fetish with the world.

Film Fetish Friday is back! Though in a slightly different format: every month Overdose’s beloved film critics Anouk and Steven will discuss a film over a nice cup of tea. Showcasing their brilliant sense for dialogue, the two critics will –following FFF’s classic formula– appreciate cinematographic pearls accordingly or slaughter sucky films. Without mercy, of course.


Steven: “So, my turn to pick a film.”
Anouk: “And I picked it, muahaha! Love our dynamics.”
Steven: “You have a thing for films targeted at senior audiences, don’t you?”
Anouk: “I do, I do. But come on, Hannah Arendt is intriguing.”
Steven: “I have to hand it to you, this does seem like an interesting story.”
Anouk: “The banality of evil, I loved that stuff during university classes. Finally an original point of view on the Shoah. So, what do you expect?”
Steven: “This movie can take so many directions. It might be hard to translate political philosophy to the screen.”
Anouk: “Thank God Arendt smoked a lot. Watching someone smoke always looks like they’re thinking very deeply.”
Steven: “She smoked a lot?”
Anouk: “Yes, her cousin said, after he’d seen the film, that his aunt smoked way more in real life. I read that somewhere.”
Steven: “I read the film focusses on the Eichmann trial.”
Anouk: “Yes, the films shows real footage from the trial!”



Anouk: “Oh God, is the actress going to talk with this German accent the entire film?”
Steven: “The accent is slightly annoying, but realistic right?”
Anouk: “Is it? I know some Germans and their English doesn’t sound like this at all. Maybe it was a sixties thing. No internet and all. Dark times.”
Steven: “I’m impressed with Barbara Sukowa so far. I have never seen her before, have you?”
Anouk: “Nope.”
Anouk: “Do you also keep thinking that Hannah Arendt must’ve smelled a lot? She’s smoking like a chimney, her hands must be yellow from all the nicotine.”
Steven: “True. But then again, most people did smoke an awful lot in those times.”
Anouk: “People must’ve smelled so badly. I can’t let this thought go.”
Steven: “How did she die? If not because of smoking, I might start again.”
Anouk: “No you won’t!”
Anouk: “Eichmann is giving me the chills. Although I’ve seen parts of the trial a couple of times before.”
Steven: “O yes, embodying the banality of evil for sure. We really have a thing for historical films, don’t we?”
Anouk: “We are historians, we better have a thing for history.”
Anouk: “Those flashbacks to her relationship with Heidegger are so irrelevant for this film.”
Steven: “It seems like the director couldn’t make up her mind. It’s not even clear who Heidegger was.”
Anouk: “Thank God we’re so smart and highly educated.”
Steven: “Thank GOD!”
Anouk: “We get everything.”
Steven: “I’m not too familiar with Heidegger’s story though. Care to enlighten me?”
Anouk: “Something about existentialism.”
Anouk: “Hey! The actor playing the chief of the New York Times looks like Netanyahu.”



Steven: “I really felt like I’ve learned something here. How did you like it?”
Anouk: “I think it’s amazing how they’ve made such a boring film about such a fascinating piece of history.”
Steven: “It was a little over-explanatory, but the old footage made it interesting enough.”
Anouk: “Not interesting enough. The discussions between Arendt and her intellectual friends were too fake. Very ‘acted’.”
Steven: “I was impressed by Sukowa’s performance. I liked that final scene where she gave her speech to defend her whole theory.”
Anouk: “Me too, little bit of girl power.”
Steven: “In a way it’s cool that the director decided to portray Arendt’s life story in a somewhat detached way.”
Anouk: “Cool how?”
Steven: “There’s no judgement there whatsoever.”
Anouk: “There is a bit. All the men in this film seem old-fashioned and stuck in their old paradigm. Except from the guy from the Times, aka Netanyahu.”
Steven: That might be true actually. It’s a little feminist.”
Anouk: The director is a woman. Explains.”
Steven: Not every male director makes a masculine film.”
Anouk: Not if they’re pussies.”
Steven: Anyway, next time I’ll choose the film.”

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