Identifying the German film "The Silence" as a police procedural doesn't do justice to the psychological and emotional intensity that accompanies the repulsive murder of an 11-year-old girl named Pia. Though partially obscured from view, that event proves difficult to watch in the opening scene. It instigates a profoundly disconcerting interrogation of all whom this eventually involves.
Director Corinna Belz’s documentary Gerhard Richter Painting features exactly that: this famous, 79-year-old German artist continuing to produce his unique, creative canvases. Sandwiched in between extensive footage of Richter working in his Cologne atelier, Belz includes snippets from a 1966 interview, a few select exhibitions, and assorted comments.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749 to 1832) made his mark in late 18th and early 19th century Germany as a true genius: lawyer, philosopher, playwright, poet, and scientist. But in his early 20s, as depicted in the film Young Goethe in Love he's a familiar, love struck young man in conflict with his father.
Cinematically presenting special needs individuals—those with mental or physical challenges—is a dicey prospect. So only a daring director would attempt to dramatize a road movie with three such people, infusing elements of comedy and romance, tension and danger, trauma and struggle. Credit German director Ralf Huettner for his gumption despite an uneven, muddled Vincent Wants to Sea.