Rafi Krespin’s review published on Letterboxd:
“I no longer exist.”
I am burnt out from writing reviews for a plethora of recent watches, so I’m going to keep this one short. Christian Petzold mines emotional poetry and perfectly captures post-holocaust despair along with the precariousness of identity through a idiosyncratic, heightened film that uses absurdity to explore a relationship’s darkest secrets.
Nina Hoss is utterly sensational in the lead role and Nina Kunzendorf’s heartwrenching lamentations also leave a powerful impression. On the whole, Phoenix didn’t captivate me throughout its running time l a lot of other films exploring the same ideas, but Petzold more than makes up for it with one of the most memorable, stunning, and well-executed endings in cinema history, hands down.
Side note: it’s still tripping me up how much Ronald Zehrfeld is Brendan Fraser’s doppelgänger, back in his fit days of course.