And Tomorrow the Entire World

 

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With her new social thriller, Julia von Heinz brings the spectre of white supremacy to present-day Mannheim, Germany

 

And Tomorrow the Entire World  
Luisa-Céline Gaffron and Mala Emde

 

Revolution has been with us for a long time and will continue to be so. Name any time in history and some group or other will be rising up against the status quo or political movements or social injustice – the list runs ever on. Here co-writer and director Julia von Heinz features P81, an antifascist group fighting against the rise of Nazism in the Germany of today, although it could have been set at any time in the past ninety years. The film focuses on a new recruit to the P81 commune, Luisa (Mala Emde), a law student from a very wealthy and privileged family, who fears the onset of a neo-Nazi Fourth Reich.
 
The group of young protagonists is well-organised with training sessions and fitness lessons, but there are two factions contained within it. Lenor (Tonio Schneider) is all for peaceful protest where nobody gets hurt as they march with their banners and their slogans, believing that to physically attack people and damage their buildings will turn public opinion against them. However, on the opposite side is Alfa (Noah Saavedra) who is all out for doing as much damage as they possibly can, acting more like Nazis themselves and retaliating by trashing their cars and property.
 
During one of the rallies Luisa finds a burner phone containing details of the return of a former Nazi leader who is planning a comeback to head a new revolution armed with bombing equipment. The P81s locate the explosives which makes Alfa even more bent on violence and destruction. Sadly, Luisa seems to agree with Alfa and ditches her pacifist ideals.
 
So, there are two sides to this argument and yet we never really know which side the director is on. Her filming technique in a way resembles a documentary style – lots of movement in the protest marches and quick cutting in the action scenes – but it still seems to lack depth. In an ensemble cast the leading protagonists stand out, with Mala Emde as Luisa, Noah Saavedra as Alfa, Tonio Schneider as Lenor coming across as reasonably believable even though they basically represent ciphers in a somewhat far-fetched plot. More credible is Andreas Lust as an older protester who had been in prison for terrorism many years previously, who is about the only truly real character on board. One assumes the film’s title is ironic.
 
Original title: Und Morgen die ganze Welt.

 

MICHAEL DARVELL

 

Cast: Mala Emde, Noah Saavedra, Tonio Schneider, Andreas Lust, Luisa-Céline Gaffron, Nadine Sauter, Ivy Lissack, Hussein Eliraqui.

                                                                                                                

Dir Julia von Heinz, Pro Fabian Gasmia, Julia von Heinz and John Quester, Screenplay John Quester and Julia von Heinz, Ph Daniela Knapp, Pro Des Christian Kettler, Ed Georg Söring, Music Matthias Petsche, Costumes Maxi Munzert, Sound Bettina Bertok.

 

Seven Elephant/Südwestrundfunk/Westdeutscher Rundfunk/Bayerischer Rundfunk/ARTE/Haïku Films/Kings & Queens Filmproduktion-Netflix.
111 mins. Germany/France. 2020. Rel: 6 May 2021. Available on Netflix. Cert. 15.