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Frau Stern DVD Review

Ahuva Sommerfeld shines in “Frau Stern.”

Written and directed by Anatol Schuster, “Frau Stern” (AKA “Ms Stern”) revolves around the titular character who is a Jewish Holocaust survivor that is on the verge of turning 90 years old. She’s decided that she has had enough of life and wants to check out. As she ponders what form of suicide to go through with, she spends her days interacting with family members (including her youthful granddaughter Elli), smokes cigarettes and weed, stealing food, recalling memories of her late husband, etc. As she attempts to end her life in several ways, she finds that in each instance she becomes disrupted by someone, but will that change her mind to end it all?

Despite a dark subject matter about death, “Frau Stern” isn’t entirely just a serious drama as there are dashes of humor here and there (dark comedy and otherwise). That’s not to say that the story isn’t told in a serious fashion though because it is. Anatol Schuster has crafted a provoking character study about a woman who has been through so much in life and is ready to leave this world. The audience really gets into the mindset of the stubborn and determined character as she drifts through life, sees visions, interacts with people, and struggles to exist (despite being in good health).

While the film does boast a credible performance by the now late Ahuva Sommerfeld in her lone acting role, the low-budget film feels a bit one note for the majority of its runtime as it includes far too many montages and repetitive moments. It often feels like a short film expanded to feature length. Still, Sommerfeld’s genuine, grounded, and human performance does elevate the film as a whole and makes it at least watchable.

Video/Audio:

Presentation: 1.33:1. Grade: B-

Audio Track: German and Hebrew 2.0 Stereo. Grade: B

The only extras are Film Movement trailers.

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January 16, 2023 - Posted by | DVD review | , ,

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