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Couples therapy
Chris Knipp24 September 2009
German director Ade's 'Everyone Else' (or 'All the Others' -- 'Alle Anderen') is very much a women's picture -- in the very most positive sense.. Her story might be the kind Jane Austen would write if she lived today, when a young couple must learn about each other by living together -- but with the old problem of weighing themselves and their values against other people's and theirs. Ade focuses on the relationship between a young architect and his publicity agent girlfriend as they think about how to be together as a couple while spending the summer at his parents' villa on the island of Sardinia. Wonderfully natural acting by the two principals as well as action that shows off the mercurial twists in man-woman roles through day-to-day events make this film continually interesting to watch even though it lacks big dramatic payoffs. But when the calibration is subtle, as with Jane Austen, little matters like buying a dress or deciding what to carry on a hike become matters from which much is to be learned.

Gitti (Birgit Minichmayr) and Chris (Lars Eidinger) seem to have a lot of fun together. Gitti shows her eccentricity when she tells the little daughter of visiting friends to be up front if she doesn't like her. She even lets the girl pretend to shoot her, then does a mock death and falls into the pool. Chris seems a little insecure about himself; his talent as an architect has yet to pay off; he's uncertain about a competition he's entered, and Gitti is worried that he's a little wimpy. Perhaps to be more assertive, he insists they spend time with his fellow architect Hans (Hans-Jochen Wagner) and pregnant wife Sana (Nicole Marischka), whom he'd initially avoided, switching gears and now considering them as potential role models. Eventually Chris acknowledges this wasn't such a good idea; that he and Gitti are happier and better off being who they are. Though there's a somewhat failed hiking expedition, and Chris (off-camera) meets with a promising local client and his future suddenly brightens up, it's primarily the couple's weighing themselves against the seemingly more fortunate pair that embodies the film's life lesson.

The quirky redhead Gitti, given to fits of laughing, has insecurities too. She doesn't like it when she asks Chris if he loves her and he answers only by kissing her. She's continually afraid he may stop loving her. Both of them in fact are in love and grateful that they ever met. This is unusual in being about a happy couple, who are not headed toward tragedy or betrayal or other dramas. But the screenplay is nothing if not proof that "happy" isn't any more a fixed reality than "confident" or "grown-up." There isn't much more to the action than that, but it's all in the details as Ade spins out one scene after another in which Eidinger and Minichmayr run through a range of emotions together.

Some male viewers of this two-hour film find it self-indulgent and interminable. There's little doubt that the second evening spent with Hans and Sana doesn't have to be allowed to run so long to make clear they're bores, and the film could have done with some trimming. It also seems that Gitti's moodiness is allowed to go too far; you begin to wonder if she may need help. However when one thinks of how natural and real the two actors are throughout, it's impossible not to conclude that Ade is doing something right, and has trod familiar paths but avoided cliché. She just needs to develop more faith in the value of the cutting room.

Seen as part of the New York Film Festival at Lincoln Center 2009.
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complex though occasionally inexplicable look at a relationship
Buddy-5110 September 2011
Similar in style and tone to last year's "Blue Valentine," the German film "Everyone Else" provides us with an oblique look at a troubled relationship. Though the couple in this film does not seem as overtly unhappy as the one in the American work, there is still something clearly eating away at their relationship. The most admirable aspect of the screenplay by Maren Ade is that it doesn't throw easy labels onto either the characters or the problems they're facing. The movie is really more a piece of objective reportage chronicling their lives over the course of a few days than a plot- and theme-driven narrative leading us to a preordained conclusion about them as people.

Chris (Lars Eidinger) is a gifted but apparently not very successful architect, while Gitti (Birgit Minichmayr), his girlfriend, who works in the recording business, seems to be generally supportive of his efforts. Chris and Gitti are spending a relaxing vacation at his mother's home on the Mediterranean, when Gitti begins to off-handedly question Chris's masculinity (we assume that it has more to do with his lack of initiative and drive than with his personal mannerisms). In response, Chris begins to treat Gitti in an ever more callous fashion, trying to prove her wrong by acting in the dismissive and domineering way he assumes "real" men do, and in the way, if Gitta is any indication, women apparently want them to.

But this synopsis really only covers the tip of the iceberg, for there are clearly many more complex dynamics taking place within this relationship that are not so easily delineated and described. Suffice it to say that the movie explores the myriad elements that go into relationships, and does so without spelling them out in simplistic terms and without passing judgment on the characters. The parameters within which any relationship must be set are still evolving and fluid in the case of Chris and Gitti, and this leads to much pushing of the boundaries and behavioral experimentation on the part of the couple throughout the course of the film. Ade's direction is unobtrusive and observational in nature, which allows the actors to interact with one another in a quasi-improvisational and thus wholly believable fashion.

There is, however, a definite downside to this type of storytelling – "Blue Valentine" suffered from it as well – and that is that the motivations for the characters' actions are often so murky and inexplicable that they can seem downright arbitrary to those of us who are watching all of this unfold from the outside in. That's why Chris and Gitti strike us as being more weird and annoying – if not downright daffy - than anything else at times.

Thus, your initial response might be to assume that perhaps Chris and Gitti simply aren't meant for one another and that they might think about looking elsewhere for a relationship. But, then again, if it were that easy to get out of a troubled relationship, we'd have no need in the first place for films like "Everyone Else."
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Intricate, intimate portrait of a relationship
runamokprods28 October 2010
Ade has that rare gift (taken to it's peak by filmmakers like Eric Rohmer and more recently Nicole Holofcener) of showing all the things movies usually don't. The little things, the subtle moments in a relationship that make up 98% of the time in real life, that lead to that dramatic 2% we usually watch on screen.

The story is about a couple in their early 30s, and not far into their relationship, taking a vacation and in the process slowly discovering each other in relation to each other and the world. Indeed the only brief moments the film feels false are when the biggest drama erupts. But for the vast majority of the time, thanks to wonderful performances by the two leads and Ade's seemingly casual, but very specific use of the camera, it feels like we are seeing the subtle, complex, confusing truth of a relationship, warts and all, in a way that's very rare on screen.
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very impressive
tomvonloguenewth31 October 2009
Warning: Spoilers
this is a most remarkable film. not a great one, perhaps, but an exceptionally finely-judged dissection of a relationship that almost outdoes scenes from a marriage. it's pretty low-key, but every single scene has at least one point of tension, ranging from tiny to quite small, in the relationship between the protagonists, and some a few between the supporting couple thrown in for good measure. the cumulative effect is extremely affecting. achieved through excellence of writing and acting, it's not obscurely subtle and did lead me to wonder if a couple of the other commencer's had actually had a relationship with anyone at all not to be at least partially engaged. it's not for me to speculate here. i would add also, in light of other comments that i found the gender focus to be fairly balanced, which i gather was a concern during production. chris is given a far greater inner life than gitti, and if she is a borderline psych case then so are many other girls who simply want some attention from a slightly hidebound, professionally insecure intellectual whose lone thoughts tend to his self rather than theirs. i only wish there had been more on what attracted the couple to one another in the first place, to make more specific sense of the breakdown, and would have appreciated the relationship's decline being a little less inexorable. but acting and writing are impeccable, and direction very well-paced (including the "nothing happens" bits which are far less frequent than other comments would suggest) and so unflashy that it is probably far better than i appreciated on a single viewing. exceptionally well-observed in detail and not cheerful viewing, and perhaps a little too bleak; the ending hints at happiness - and the lack of resolution is a bit annoying, but appreciated for sparing the who's-afraid-of-virginia-woolf territory that would undoubtedly follow - but it's an exceptionally instructive lesson in how not to take care of the details in a relationship.
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a great movie
jos-10514 July 2009
great actors, smart dialogs and a very precise observations of a young professional society in Germany. one of the best German films in a long time made by a director who knows how to direct great actors. people who like theatre will love this movie. when i went to this movie i expected a German version of a french movie from directors like francois ozon. i also expected it to be a typical movie made from a woman for women. still i expected a lot because the actors count to the best ones of German theatre. the movie did not turn out the way i expected it. the questions it raises about creative achievers who want to stay independent, free and young are shameless and razor sharp. every scene is observed very precisely without seeming to be constructed. gitty (birgit minichmayr) might not be as strong as many might hope but she never looses the main focus of this movie: authenticity
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Are Germans really this boring?
Radu_A20 May 2010
A typical festival film with zero audience appeal, 'Everyone else' could be used as a literally picture-perfect argument against state-funded film making.

The rudimentary story follows a young German couple on an Italian resort island. The man is an unsuccessful architect smooching off his parents (they live in their holiday home), the woman a somewhat bipolar concert manager. Their relationship is questioned by the man's lackadaisical loser attitude and the woman's whimsical fretting.

A story like this can only entertain, or at least interest, if it is a little funny. However the director Maren Ade takes very good care to avoid even the slightest trace of humor. Instead, the viewer is dragged along a two-hour stretch of two people boring each other to shreds - a scenario all too familiar to connoisseurs of German cinema.

Still, 'Everyone Else' won the Berlin Festival's Grand Jury Prize and its female lead a Silver Bear - which, considering her lobotomous approach to acting, is quite remarkable. This proves in my view once more the flimsiness of festival selections and the way awards are given away: a movie with such obvious dismay for any imaginable audience must surely be artistic and therefore prize-worthy - for culture politicians. Not for cineasts and the general public, that's for sure.

A much better German approach to the same topic would be the equally dry, but much more entertaining 'Windows on Monday' (aka Montags kommen die Fenster, 2006). That film has a weird sense of humor to it, which makes the drab couple-conflict plot work quite well.
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Hopelessly boring, 2 hours story that could've been told in 10 minutes
kvwielink29 September 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Saw this movie during the Bangkok film festival. Unfortunately after 4 great movies, this 5th and final one was a huge disappointment. This is probably one of the slowest movies I've ever seen. Long silences punctuate boring, long-winding conversations that seem to go on forever. After a while, the theme begins to repeat itself. Quarrels over trivial things between a very introvert guy and a girl who apparently enjoys throwing the odd tantrum. This basically goes on for 2 hours. As already pointed out in another comment, at the end of the movie you start to wonder if the girl has some serious mental issues. The acting is not bad, but I wouldn't call it special. At the end of the movie, you're left confused, not really understanding what the point of the story was. The ending is abrupt, and if one would actually be interested in the story at all it would leave one with an unsatisfactory finale. Why this movie won the Silver Bear in Berlin is a mystery to me. In my opinion watching it was a waste of time.
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Lacks in a lot of areas
Horst_In_Translation23 March 2016
Warning: Spoilers
"Alle Anderen" or "Everyone Else" is a German 2-hour film from 7 years ago. It was written and directed by Maren Ade and stars Birgit Minichmayr and Lars Eidinger basically in every scene from start to finish as we follow their characters on a holidays in Southern Europe. They play a couple that is clearly struggling with (the lack of) masculinity in their relationship, especially when they keep meeting another couple with a clearly different approach to the subject. What can I say? I personally thought this was not a good watch. None of the 4 major characters in the film were likable to me and that resulted in me not caring for them at all. People may say their flaws define their actions and make them interesting, but I personally did not feel they were written in a realistic manner. It all felt so over the top, especially the scenes that the two had together. They were written in a way that lacked authenticity completely and allowed the actors to go as hammy as possible.

The only somewhat interesting scenes in my opinion were when the two met the other couple on 3 occasions because of the group mentality that was fascinating to watch on several occasions. Then again it was really always the same basically. People acting as if they like each other when all they felt for the other was really despair and yet Minichmayr's character, even if she despised the strong alpha male, did not like the weakling that her boyfriend was. Did not make any sense at all. Her character was clearly written in a way that should have been as baity as possibly, but in depth did not make any sense. Eidinger's character's approach to acting like a feminine sissy (or trying to be masculine and failing gloriously) was neither a good portrayal nor intelligently written. All in all the film lacked subtlety and good character writing from start to finish and the ending with the apparent split-up followed by the two acting in harmony again was extremely lackluster too. The worst possible way that this could have ended. By then, not only the audience does not care about the two anymore, but even Ade herself apparently wasn't giving a *beep* anymore. The material does not justify such a massive runtime. 4 stars out of 10 is a very generous rating here. Do not be fooled by all the awards attention this movie got. It is not worth seeing. Not at all.
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Dull, dull, dull, dull, dull...
jross777 September 2009
Warning: Spoilers
A really dull film about really dull people. It just goes on and on.

And the most urgent thought running through my head throughout: With all that dusk and evening activity, or inactivity, outside and by open windows - why do they never get bitten by insects???

2 hours! I ask you.

I gave it more than one star because it had opening credits, then pictures with actors and then closing credits, so was actually a film.

I saw the still with the bloodied shirt beforehand, and got slightly excited when the shirt made its first appearance in the film, hoping for some action at last. The resulting sub plot about the bandage was, however, more mind-numbing dullness that sapped my will to live. Another film I wished I had left halfway through.
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What a horrible lot
tod30584 February 2010
I'm going to keep this fairly short and sweet, which is not what the Director decided to do in this film. A long and laboring film about a couple who appear to have just met, but turns out are in a long term relationship, and have clear issues with each other and the wider world. All of the characters were unlikable, unbelievable and unpleasant. The redeeming feature should be the cinematography, but that is ruined by the Directors inability to edit the shots down. Uncomfortably long and voyeuristic sex scenes coupled with long silent pauses within conversations, which are painfully obvious there to portray the awkwardness between characters, add to audiences torture. I didn't like nor care for the characters and I was desperate for the Director to put me out of my misery and end this film. It finally did and I was happy. With some discipline, good actors and story this Director could achieve something watchable but unfortunately they didn't here.
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A smashing bore, and thoroughly unpleasant
zetes30 January 2011
A young German couple is on a business/vacation trip in Sardinia. They don't much like each other. They pretty much argue and snipe at each other constantly. They probably, in fact, should just get a divorce. Oh, wait: they're not married. So why the Hell are they even together? These two people just need to move the Hell on. The film really does understand its characters quite intimately, and the lead actors (Birgit Minichmayr and Lars Eidinger) are good, but so what? These people are just not worth caring about or observing in any way whatsoever. The movie moves very slowly and is basically the equivalent of hanging out with horrible people for a very, very long two hours. Terrible.
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I can go hang out with some of my friends if I want to see this.
Hellmant18 February 2011
'EVERYONE ELSE': Two Stars (Out of Five)

One of the most critically praised movies of the year which goes to show critic's approval doesn't always mean anything. The film tells the story of an unhappily married couple on a Mediterranean vacation. There's really not much else to it. It's a German film, with English subtitles, and it's written and directed by Maren Ade. It stars Birgit Minichmayr and Lars Eidinger as the couple.

Minichmayr plays Gitti and Eidinger plays Chris and as the movie opens they appear to be a happily married couple. As the movie progresses we get to slowly know the couple and how they relate to each other. We gradually see the cracks in their relationship as they grow bigger and bigger. In the end do we really care enough about these characters to really care if things work out between the two? I say no.

The movie is well acted and for what it attempts to do I think it's well made to a certain extent. I just don't admire what it attempts to do very much. It wants us to see what an average couple goes through in good times and bad and see what drives them apart and what keeps them together. I think they portrayed a believable average couple realistically, it's just not the type of couple I'd care to spend much time with. That's what the movie is like, spending a lot of time with an annoying bickering couple. For me that's hard to watch and pointless. I can go hang out with some of my friends if I want to see that. Other than living the painful realities of a painful relationship the movie has nothing else of any value to offer. There's nothing learned here and certainly nothing witnessed of any entertainment value. The movie just doesn't work.

Watch our review show 'MOVIE TALK' at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-m3RUjISnYI
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do not watch it under any circumstances
gaga7526 September 2011
Warning: Spoilers
this movie shows nothing but a dysfunctional couple, the woman obviously with a bipolar disorder, the man simply depressed. After having seen them talking past each other for the first ten minutes, I expected the movie to begin. But it didn't. I couldn't believe it would stay like this, so I continued watching. But nothing else happened.

Please stop reading here, since that's all there is to say. Unless you want to get a deeper idea of the movie's feeling. Unfortunately I have to fill another 4 lines in order to have IMDb let me submit this review. Maybe thats similar to the writer's situation who didn't have any further ideas after having written the script's first pages.
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Definitely NOT for the Blackberry mentality.
vitaleralphlouis13 June 2010
Warning: Spoilers
You'll need an attention span greater than 4 seconds to enjoy this movie. The entire story focuses on a young unmarried German couple on a business/vacation in Sardinia, interacting with a very few other people. They talk to each other, paw each other, consider the other person's flaws and assets; magnetically in love and pondering the long term. It would serve no purpose adding many details, except.....

Gitti is showing lots of leg in the opening shots and --- not to give away the plot, but --- the legs remain in view for 110 minutes of this 119 minute movie.

The sex theme is entirely hetro-sexual -- a refreshing change in 2010 and why we chose this one over "Sex and the City 2." Also good was the exciting and wonderful man-above scene, normally maligned in movies in preference to the preferred slamming the girl against a wall method.

A good 6/10 movie but no reason why this picture ought to have received any awards or undue praise. The 3rd German movie we've seen in 2010, the other two (Woman of Berlin, North Face) were better.
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Minimal German drama goes on and on.
Mozjoukine12 June 2009
The thinking is too obvious. Get a couple of well built people to talk for two hours, with some (uninspiring) nudity thrown in and no one has to find too much money to produce something that looks like a movie. There are so many film festivals, one of them is bound to play it.

Fraulein Minichmayr is lively enough and she's been in some real films (Downfall, Perfume)so her first scene with the little girl holds hope - "Tell me why you think I'm so awful." Co star Eidinger as an architect offers a chance for some comment on taste and style which fail to impress.

Production values are in the competent unimpressive bracket.

It was the end of the Sydney Film Festival but this was not the movie to offer an audience which had just been blackjacked with the ridiculous Ming-liang Tsai VISAGE. Have they no mercy? Even film festival subscribers deserve pity.
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not a directing and acting perspective, but congratulations and thank you
talullah829 May 2013
I have only a few words to say about this movie. I am not interested in its ratings, and the angles in which it has been filmed, nor I will question the actors.

all I can say is that this movie showed MY RELATIONSHIP. me and my boyfriend have our very first portrait, and such fine details that made us burst in laughter and also deep and serious feelings we both found in this movie were depicted from our real daily life.

I couldn't have compared us to Gone with the wind, or other classic love stories. :))))

Congratulations to the director.
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good sophomore effort left me waiting for it to be over
dfwforeignbuff4 November 2010
long review in making. saw this tonite nov 4 2010. Its a little too much chick oriented to me and became boring and kind of vague. its a good movie and a great sophomore effort by the director but some of the scenes just dragged on. If she dislike him so much why did she marry him?? why did he put up with the constant haranguing??? why did he not do more with his work? the married couple is unbelievable and unpleasant. this film has phenomenal 90 percent on rotten tomatoes and 6.6 on IMDb. the 66 out of 100 is my personal feeling. the ending had a real lack of resolution and for much of the movie nothing was happening.
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A good insight into real life: role fights in a young partnership
corneliakueffner27 March 2017
It makes you feel to learn something about reality, also in your own life. Excellent German movie about tensions, honesty, lies, weakness, role games, superficiality in a relationship of a young couple. A very smart, vivid and profound portrayal of problems in a partnership. The same director as of other successful movies, e.g. Toni Erdmann!
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Gitti and Chris
jotix10029 May 2011
Warning: Spoilers
A young couple is visiting the Mediterranean island of Sardinia. Chris, an architect, and Gitti, who handles pop musical groups are staying at his parent's villa high above the town and the beaches. They are left alone, when some other guests depart. Chris and Gitti are in a relationship that for all signs we get, are new at living together.

As they explore their sexuality, one gets the impression not everything is what it should be. Perhaps with time, they will achieve some degree of togetherness. Chris has been in touch with someone in the island that wants to use his skills to remodel a home. Gitti finds herself alone most of the time, as Chris meets his prospective client.

Spotting a couple Chris knows, one day at a supermarket, changes their lonely existence. Hans is also an architect and his companion, Sana, is a fashion designer. Chris is reluctant to mingle with them, but he cannot avoid them. Meeting for dinner does not end in a happy note as Hans, clearly drunk, throws Sana into the pool. Chris does the same thing to Gitti, who did not appreciate the gesture.

With time in her hands, Gitti examines her relationship. Not everything is the way she hoped it would be. Even the times when they are having sex does not make her feel any different. When she decides she has to go back, Chris realizes he has to do something. Finding her on the floor, unresponsive, scares him because he really has come around to realize he really cares for her.

Maren Ade's "Everyone Else" is a character study between two people that should be in love, but as we get to know Gitti and Chris better, we realize not everything is there. While Gitti is spontaneous and fun, Chris is reserved, perhaps not as open as she is. Ms. Ade follows the pair as they go through different changes before they realize the how deep is their commitment. What the film cries for is perhaps some editing. A tighter film perhaps would have made the film more accessible to audiences. It is obvious this film was not intended for a large audience and viewers without an idea about what it is about will be bored to death because there is no action to speak of. Ms. Ade takes a look at this complex couple and she is serious about what she wanted to tell.

Birgit Minichmayr and Lars Eidinger make an impact as the couple being studied in the film. Ms. Minichmayr fares best as Gitti; she is a natural and she has a way to convey what she is feeling any moment she is in front of the camera. Mr. Eidinger is also good, but it takes a while to warm to him.

The film is devoid of music. The only exception comes in the way of a stereo being turned on by one the characters. Bernard Keller photographs the intimate setting of the villa, as well as some rough mountainous area of Sardinia.
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The bubble economies of love
ThurstonHunger31 December 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Even in our own relationships, there is something we are missing in our partners, and I'm sure our partners while loving us, often miss what we feel are our best intentions, if not actions.

This film rides a voyeuristic spark, both in terms of the two main interests, but also there was the aspect of seeing the temple for lack of a better world, of the young man's mother whom we never meet. But mostly it is about young people in love, which sure is a flower with plenty of thorns, but one we all want to see take root and last for many seasons.

Yet relationships are hard, and moreso if linguistic currency, or even actual currency, is not set at a fair exchange. Trying to figure out who we are, is as much a challenge as trying to figure out whom we should be with. Don't wait on the former to start the latter, but they can come at cross purposes. Trying to ride past the person you thought you saw with who they actually are, that is certainly a challenge and seen in this film, where originally the young man seems to be cut from the wonderfully aware cloth that his mother swaddled him in. That contrast may parallel the contrast of where the couple is staying versus the ground where their financial footing actually lands.

Is this an Antonioni film for people in their 30's? Maybe, I enjoyed it and hope not all people, young or otherwise, feel relationships are always doomed. At least enjoy your time in that bubble with your love, where you manage to keep the world at bay (not just the infatuation whirlwind, although that is great for Everyone).
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