Filmmaking, Women, Love – “Ins Blaue” [2012 Germany]

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Veteran filmmaker Rudolf Thome’s “Ins Blaue” [Eng. Title: Into the Blue] is a tragicomedy on the making of a film, where a homage of sorts to the French New Wave and Godard (Le mépris) can not only be sensed in its structure and storyline, but choice of locations too (Southern Italy).

Retired filmmaker Abraham Rabenthal (Vadim Glowna in one of his last appearances) is producing the directorial début feature (titled Ins Blaue) of his daughter Nike (Alice Dwyer), and together are filming around Neapolitan locales with their cast and crew. Nike’s film is about three young women – Eva (Esther Zimmering), Josephine (Janina Rudenska), and Laura (Elisabeth-Marie Leistikow) – travelling in a camper van through Italy and having individual adventures with men along the way. Eva hooks up with a monk, Josephine with a mute fisherman, and Laura, an old philosopher. After a bank rejects Abraham’s application for further funding, costs needed to be cut, and two of the male characters – the monk and the fisherman, are played by the same cast member Wilhelm (Stefan Rudolf), and the old philosopher, by Abraham himself.

But that’s when things get more complicated, for aspiring actress Laura, unbeknown to Nike, had gone through the legendary ‘casting couch’ process with Abraham in order to get the part in the film. She had politely rejected Abraham’s repeated advances since then, but now has to play his lover in her segment. It comes to a head in the pivotal sex scene between the two, after Laura couldn’t stand being groped, and walks off the set. It will also lead to painful consequences when Nike gets to know the back story…

Certain parallels can be drawn between Abraham and director Thome himself, who too has a daughter in the film industry, to suggest that Abraham might even be his alter ego, in his philosophising and taking advantage of a situation for short-term gains. For someone who comes across as creative and ambitious, Nike, even while cherishing dreams of winning the Palm d’Or for her feature, impulsively seeks dad’s comfort when things go awry during a shoot. The women in her film too, whilst proclaiming their independence and ability to manage on their own, seek assistance from a passing monk when their car breaks down. But I’m not sure if Thome wants us to see the irony, apart from merely using such situations to propel his story.

The most fascinating parts of the film relate to Nike directing the shoot, and Alice Dwyer gives a convincing interpretation of her character, as a talented young director improvising with her material. It would have been an even better film if the father-daughter drama were brought to the fore further, if only to justify the reactions we see. It is however a well-made film that is Recommended Viewing..! DVD Link [PAL]


The Nudity: Vadim Glowna, Elisabeth-Marie Leistikow, Esther Zimmering, Janina Rudenska, and Stefan Rudolf
The most notable nudity happens in the skinny-dipping sequence, which is actually a scene that Nike is shooting for her film. There is additional nudity when Nike directs the sex scenes, of Josephine and Laura, with Wilhelm and Abraham respectively.

Esther Zimmering, Elisabeth-Marie Leistikow, and Janina Rudenska nude in Ins Blaue

Esther Zimmering, Elisabeth-Marie Leistikow, Janina Rudenska and others, also appear nude in Rudolf Thome’s “Ins Blaue” aka “Into the Blue”.



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