If someone takes something dear from you, would you try to cope and move ahead with your life? Or would you sacrifice everything else you had to avenge your loss? Does closure come when you see those who hurt you punished, or forgiven? Die Vierhändige (Four Hands) is a multi layered work of art, which discusses these very difficult and very human questions.
Die Vierhändige is about two young women, Sophie (Frida-Lovisa Hamann) and Jessica (Friederike Becht), who grew up in the shadow of trauma which they had each experienced differently, and they struggle to find ways to cope with horrible loss and crippling emotional suffering. Sophie strives to forget the past and trains to become a successful pianist, while Jessica feels that closure can only come through an uncompromising path of revenge. In the film, Jessica displays a truly Shakespearean level of vengeance, while Sophie would maintain that living well is the best revenge. The conflict between them is what makes this movie so fascinating to watch.
I was instantly hooked by this story which begins with a gritty scene of utter brutality that sets up the motivations and psychology of the main characters. I have always felt that the characters are the most important part of any story. Die Vierhändige’s director and writer, Oliver Kienle, has shown that he knows what it takes to write a great story, and he seems to have a keen and intimate knowledge of the craft, and an honed instinct for creating great cinema. In addition to its visual style, fantastic editing and detailed attention to composition, Die Vierhändige has a great mix of brutal action, nail biting suspense, and subtle creepiness that works all the way throughout the movie. It is all masterfully executed by the actors who are all brilliant on screen.
Die Vierhändige is packed with symbolism which often alludes to the themes in the movie. One example is the use of windows. There are windows everywhere and windows not only play an important part of the plot, but they also serve as a transition between scenes and locations. Perhaps they are meant to show that windows can offer us a hopeful view of the outside world, while keeping us trapped inside. It was as if freedom and confinement all depend on which side of the glass you are on.
This is a psychological thriller that is definitively horrific in nature. Die Vierhändige made it’s debut this year at the Munich Film festival and it is set to be released in Germany in November according to IMDB. Die Vierhändige makes it’s way to the US as a part of the Chicago International Film Festival on October 14th. If you are in the area you should go and check it out.
Born and raised in San Diego California, I grew up loving the action horror and sci-fi genres. The first R rated film I saw was Predator back when I was 8 years old. Aliens blew me away as a youngster and I made a M41-A pulse rifle out of paper towel rolls and rubber bands. I ran around for hours avoiding face huggers and blasting xenomorphs in my back yard and I am bringing that big imagination to Nevermore Horror.