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Der Bunker - Artsploitation Print E-mail
User Rating: / 2
Written by Richard Taylor   
Sunday, 05 March 2017
Severed Cinema review of Der Bunker from Artsploitation


AKA: The Bunker, O Bunker, A bunkerbe zŠrva, Bunker

Directed by: Nikias Chryssos
Written by: Nikias Chryssos
Produced by: Nikias Chryssos
Cinematography by: Matthias Reisser
Editing by: Carsten Eder
Special Effects by: Sylvia Grave
Music by: Leonard Petersen
Cast: Pit Bukowski, Daniel Fripan, Oona von Maydell, Davi Scheller
Year: 2015
Color: Color
Language: German (English Subtitles)
Country: Germany
Runtime: 1hr 25mins

Distribution: Artsploitation

Der Bunker is a German film which has won numerous awards around the world, and itís easy to see why due to its quirky sensibilities and original demeanor. Personally, I wasn't sure what to expect from Der Bunker even though it has been apparently received a lot of hype. Once I got further into it I began enjoying it more. I was surprised by the light-hearted style it had as I was expecting a much darker and mean-spirited type of film due to the plot and content. While I was watching I was even unsure of what I thought of the movie, it invoked some different feelings, I believe it is the type of flick that could benefit from a second viewing. After watching I feel overall itís a memorable well-made movie with some genuinely humorous moments.

Der Bunker weaves an eccentric tale of a bizarre family who live in an isolated but substantially sized bunker situated deep in the forest. The family is made up of characters simply named Father (David Scheller), Mother (the oddly sexy Oona von Maydell) and their bizarre older looking childlike son Klaus (Daniel Fripan). We are introduced to the family at the dinner table in the opening scenes, and it seems they have placed an ad, or have somehow successfully rented out a room in their less than desirable accommodations. How they have placed the ad is unknown, and to be honest makes zero sense but this part of the story is minor as this is not a film drenched in realism but instead filled with oddly appealing characters and bizarre dark humor.

The man that comes to board with the strange family in their bunker is simply referred to as The Student and is played by Pit Bukowski (Der Samurai). Later in the film when The Student starts tutoring Klaus to become The President of the United States of America (yes, itís fucked, watch the movie, you'll get it or maybe you won't), they refer to him as The Teacher. For now The Student arrives and is given dingy prison-like digs but at least itís quiet and he can focus on his studies he gestures. The Student begins getting to know the family more but instead of packing up his shit from the sheer creepiness and fright he actually develops a love/hate relationship with them once he takes on Klaus as his pupil.

The character of Klaus played by (Daniel Fripan) is absolutely hilarious and I hate to say it but the guy suits the role perfectly as a fluffy dressed up man boy. The character is somewhat reminiscent of Peter Bark in Burial Ground who plays another creepy old man child. Fripan does a wonderful job with this role bringing a genuine demeanor of being an 8-year-old who believes along with his parents that if he knows all the capital cities of the world he can be The President of the United States of America. His daft parents believe the same shit and itís stammeringly funny how serious their beliefs are in their own little bunker world. There are some great bits in Der Bunker, especially when The Student really opens up and lets loose with Klaus. They even begin having fun, a concept which is foreign to Klaus. The family are supremely fucked as dear old dad paints his face and reads funny stories to the family as a nightly ritual. Mom has this open sore on her leg which she names Heinrich and it talks to her, dictates her actions and makes decisions.

I can see Der Bunker being a film to love or hate. As with anything, some people will get it and others will not and find it relatively boring and stupid. Fortunately I get it. After watching droves and droves of indie cinema offerings, Der Bunker is refreshing and a nice change of pace. It sports some great performances, camera work, and considering the claustrophobic setting with such few characters it all works well and in the movies favor.







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