In a small German town, just after the end of WWI, a young woman mourning her fallen fiancé sees an unfamiliar man place a bouquet of flowers on his grave. In attempting to uncover the mysterious Frenchman’s identity, Anna discovers her own capacity for resilience and learns important lessons about the complex relationship between love and honesty. Loosely inspired by Ernst Lubitsch’s classic anti-war melodrama Broken Lullaby (1932), Frantz paints an illuminating and affecting portrait of life in post-war Europe, where nationalist hostilities and fresh memories of trauma and loss simmer just under the surface of everyday life. Mirroring form and content, Ozon embellishes his artfully composed black-and-white film with brief color sequences that poignantly underscore his characters’ deferred dreams and repressed longings. Frantz is further distinguished by a captivating performance from Paula Beer, recipient of the Best Young Actress prize at the 2016 Venice Film Festival.
Director François Ozon 2016 France/Germany 113 minutes PG-13 (for thematic elements including brief war violence) DCP