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A Coffee in Berlin

Directed by Jan Ole Gerster

Germany, 2012

HOME, 4 November 2016

A Coffee In Berlin

A stylish, well constructed film with a sting in its tail.

For the most part an astringent comedy along the lines of Seinfeld and The Office, and very enjoyable for all that, this serves as a deft way of softening you up for the killer punch at the close.

In essence, the film follows a day in the life of Niko, a personable waster played by Tom Schilling, a pleasant looking actor who rather resembles the world chess challenger Sergey Karjakin.

According to Volker Ullrich or Timothy Snyder, one of the two, German citizens – and therefore not least the residents of Berlin – never really took to Kristallnacht in November 1938, which is why it was a one-off. The Nazis orchestrated the violence but think of it: all that mess and disruption, broken glass littering the streets wherever you walked, you can see how it would offend the German sense of Ordnung, orderliness. Maybe also the violence was too close to home, too much in plain sight.

Anyway, this is a fine film which is playing as part of Berlin Now.