Sunday, December 2, 2012

Rabbits Without Ears

Keinohrhasen; comedy, Germany, 2007; D: Til Schweiger, S: Til Schweiger, Nora Tschirner, Matthias Schweighöfer, Alwara Höfels

Ludo is a yellow press reporter who, after disrupting Wladimir Klitschko's marriage proposal in search for a scoop, is sentenced to 300 hours of community service at a day care. There he meets Anna, the head manager, who is still angry at him because the teased her when they were kids. However, despite her uptight attitude, they land in bed one night in a moment of carelessness. Anna falls in love with him, but is disgusted when she finds out he forgot their date and instead had sex with another woman. Realizing his mistake, Ludo appologizes and they end up as a couple.

Despite its huge and unexpected box office success - it attracted 6,3 million moviegoers in German cinemas, ranking it among the top 10 most popular German films till 2007 - "Rabbits Without Ears" is a stale comedy that relies too much on cheap, rough and blatant jokes and too little on those more sophisticated ones and a palely ignored love story that could have been much more engaging on its own. The cameos, which the yellow press hero stalks and interviews, are a quiet delight - the bald actor Jürgen Vogel is hilarious in the opening scene where he plays himself after a phase of "enlightenment", with fake long blond hair and butt implants (!), whereas Wladimir Klitschko appears as himself while proposing to Yvonne Catterfeld (!) - but those two-three guest appearances are too little to compensate for the rest of the story which appeals to the wide audience in often too low ways (children at a day care mimicking the teacher and all collectively showing their middle fingers; hair removal...) and is overstretched to carry the plot. The sole title, derived from the hero's poorly made rabbit puppet without ears, is rubbish. However, Til Schweiger and Nora Tschirner have chemistry as the two (uneven) protagonists, and their interaction manages to ignite a few more precious, elevated examples of storytelling that hit the right note far stronger than all those heavy handed jokes.


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