Indie Gems: Phoenix
"New year new you" has never been more inappropriate.
Nelly (Nina Hoss) is a concentration camp survivor who suffered terrible burns to her face. She gets facial reconstruction surgery, but no matter how much she wants to look the same, she doesn't. She's desperate to find her husband, Johnny (Ronald Zehrfeld) but her helpful friend Lene (Nina Kuzendorf) insists that he more than likely is the one that sold her out to the Nazis in the first place. This doesn't stop her curiosity when she actually does locate him.
I was really bummed when I missed this film in theaters, it had such a limited release and mine only had it for about a week. I jumped on this right away when I saw it was on Netflix Instant. Sure, Holocaust movies are overdone, but I can appreciate them when they're different, and this one is.
It's both fascinating and frustrating to watch Nelly. She's making terrible choices, but at the same time it's impossible to judge due to the horrors she just endured. Nina Hoss is wonderful in the lead role. As are Zehrfeld and Kuzendorf, though she does not have a huge part.
The ending might be one of the most beautiful things I've seen in awhile. And it's fun to imagine what happened immediately following it.
Memorable Quote: "I want to look exactly as I did before." - Nelly (Nina Hoss)