US 1998, D Jonathan Demme, SC Akosua Busia, Richard LaGravenese, Adam Brooks based on the novel by Toni Morrison, C Tak Fujimoto, E Andy Keir, Carol Littleton, M Rachel Portman, S Skip Lievsay, P Jonathan Demme, Kate Forte, Gary Goetzman, Edward Saxon, Oprah Winfrey, Cast Oprah Winfrey, Danny Glover, Thandie Newton, Kimberly Elise, Beah Richards, Lisa Gay Hamilton, Albert Hall, Jason Robards, Print colour, digital, 172 min, engl. OV, The Walt Disney Company

18 years after her escape to freedom, former slave Sethe lives with her daughter just outside the gates of Cincinnati. Rare fortune seems on the horizon when brother-in-suffering of former days Paul D. steps into her life. Alas, the family is haunted by the trauma of the past in the form of a mysterious young woman known as “Beloved”. Leading woman Oprah Winfrey played a key role in producing this film, which translates the novel by Toni Morrison, who passed away in August, into poetic and eerie imagery.

„The boundaries between history and our private lives cannot be made impermeable, and so it follows too that Demme has chosen to create neither epos nor chamber drama, but a third thing instead. An aesthetic of infiltration and exclusion, of imprisonment and liberation. A history lesson on one hand, and on the other a film that continues the soul-iconography of Silence of the Lambs in a completely different context. And the film is also radical in the sense that it doesn’t offer us any “good” white folks, any myth of reconciliation. Liberation is only just getting started, and the past is never over.“ (Georg Seeßlen, epd Film, No. 4/1999)

WED 18.12.19