The Bloom of Yesterday

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Germany | 2016 | 125 minutes | Chris Kraus

Lars Eidinger (Personal Shopper) stars as a short-tempered Holocaust researcher struggling with his family's past who finds his barriers breaking down after being saddled with a frank and unconventional female assistant (two-time Cesar-winner Adele Heanel).

Monday, May 22, 2017

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Wednesday, May 24, 2017

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Thursday, May 25, 2017

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Is it possible to make a rom-com based on Holocaust research? German writer/director Chris Kraus' audacious, provocative story about a misanthropic historian reluctantly paired with an ebullient intern appears, at first, to head toward a formulaic exercise in transgressive romance. But Kraus wisely chooses unexpected pivots toward more nuanced emotional material as his characters grapple with their shared tragic history. The film focuses on humorless Holocaust scholar Toto (Lars Eidinger), who is planning a conference about the legacy of the camps but chafes against the crassness of corporate sponsorship. So he's already in a dismissive mood when he meets his polar opposite in Zazie (Adele Haenel), the young, confrontational French woman who becomes his assistant. While she has her share of wisecracks ("A Holocaust researcher with a sense of humor is like a butt without a hole") and impulsive tendencies (tossing a small dog out of a moving car), Kraus leavens the screwball antics with genuine emotions stirred up by the dark subject matter. When Toto and Zazie both realize they have ancestors on opposite sides during the Holocaust, they find a common bond that draws them together. The Bloom of Yesterday manages the difficult feat of finding humor in spite of the backdrop of systemized genocide while acknowledging that the scars from the Third Reich are still tender, even three generations removed.

Director Biography

Chris Kraus spent the 1990s working as a writer for films such as Gravity & Grace (1996) and The Einstein of Sex (1999). She made her directorial debut in 2002 with Shattered Glass, which she developed from the novel of the same name.

Sponsored by Comcast

  • Original Language Title: Die Blumen von Gestern
  • Director: Chris Kraus
  • Principal Cast: Lars Eidinger, Adèle Haenel, Jan Josef Liefers, Hannah Herzsprung
  • Premiere Status: North America
  • Country: Germany, Austria
  • Year: 2016
  • Running Time: 125 minutes
  • Producer: Danny Krausz, Kathrin Lemme, Chris Kraus, Gerd Huber, Kurt Stocker
  • Screenplay: Chris Kraus
  • Cinematographers: Sonja Rom
  • Editors: Brigitta Tauchner
  • Music: Annette Focks
  • Website: Official Film Website
  • Awards: Tokyo International Film Festival 2016 (Grand Prix, WOWOW Viewer's Choice Award)
  • Filmography: The Poll Diaries (2010); 4 Minutes (2006); Shattered Glass (2002)
  • Language: German
  • Has Subtitles: Yes
  • Format: DCP
  • International Sales: Beta Cinema