To yourself

  “We need to talk” – with these words usually begin talks of the unpleasant kind, which is not uncommon to end in disaster – it in a professional context or in a private setting. In André Erkaus film monologues, in 2008 was awarded the Max Ophüls Prize, is constantly talking, and this even more professionally. Now, whoever assumes that the quantity of the talks would lead to an improvement in quality, looks to be disappointed. For rare in German cinema has been so much blabbering blabbing, and misunderstood, as in this film, which also plays more generally in a call center. More accurate would have been a movie about the pitfalls of modern communications can hardly put in scene-at least in regard to what the setting.

, A young man enters a joyful heart (Maiximilian Brückner), the offices of the call center in Cologne DOM Call and promptly landed in a microcosm, as he himself could not have dreamed of. Sasha, the name of the newcomer, for whom the call center is only a short breather before the final vertical take into show business – after all he is the right hand of a sleazy show master in charge of the warm-up – arrives just in time for the call center the signs are that a storm: When is not driven within one month, the success rate by 5 percent in the air, which threatens to shift the contract to the Polish border. “Western Pomerania is the new India”, as Richard Harms (August Zirner), the Department of DOM Call white. In order to improve (self-) monitoring of professional Dampfplauderer already announced soon have a display panel, the average call duration and the ratio of sold DSL and flat rate packages that Harms and his colleagues bring to the retail customer. But that is by Harms with pithy sayings coaching required to achieve sales growth not as easy to use. And it’s not just the quality of the product but also the motivation of employees, who all have – as indeed it smarter boss – also struggling with private concerns.

, Since, for example, Adrian (Johannes Allmayer ), actually the star of the telephone sale, the verbal melee with eye contact, but because of his chronic shyness always draws the short straw. At home he has to provide for his melancholy father, because after the death of Adrian’s mother, this is just as his son slipped into a deep existential crisis. Or separated Marie (Antje Widdra), between the legacy of their relationship, concern for her son and her own standing as an architect applications spiritual life is no longer under control. And even at Harms, the signs are in private to a storm, for his marriage can be, with quotations from coaching advisers kitten no more, the cracks are too deep, the years of misunderstanding and Nichtzuhörens leave his wife to have. Sascha and myself? Since the pregnancy of his girlfriend, his future prospects dimmed considerably since he has to realize that his dreams are of a TV career is nothing but foam. But it is all much worse – for everyone involved …

Almost like battery hens and the experimental arrangement of a behavioral scientist contribute pitiless the phone booths in the call center and one is tempted, given the sterility of the workplace, petitions for a “welfare “Write of call center agents. Stand out more sharply against this background, the small human dramas that are likely to be known to every viewer – Fear of the future, separations, bond failure and nearly every form of communicative failure. This is all out to settle in a place that belongs to the chatter on the permanent job description, is a clever move by André Erkau, who himself worked in the old days in such a call center – he was just young and needed the money.

In spite of all accuracy and good actors could have been opened at some point you want bolder and more toxic – in approaches, when all the figures but rough edges in place, but rarely are they brought into play, does the film in some places smoothed and given the many important issues, which he cuts it, just too nice. Since forming a brief cameo by Günter Wallraff, who recently struck undercover telephone call center, almost the tip of the satirical – especially August Zirner as a manager with undeniable charm and even greater professional and personal deficits would still be available for some punch with pinpoint accuracy against the service society been good. Thus, the film remains mostly arrested at private parties and offers some unnecessary detour in the story (which was born out of desperation sexual episode between Marie and Sascha seems strangely out of place) a sometimes exhilarating, sometimes frightening insight into all of our communication behavior. Whether listening to the visit of the movie over again, however, is doubtful, given the ubiquity of meaningless chatter is. Insofar as the subtitle of the film “We need to talk works” almost like a threat.

(Joachim Kurz)

Title: monologues Country of production: Germany Year of production: 2008 Length: 96 (Min) of material: (# ) Filmlichter

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