Schlaraffenland

  • 81'
  • Switzerland
  • 1995
A modern fairy-tale in social-realist garb. Three men have withdrawn from harsh reality to a piece of land that serves as junk and breakers' yard. Orlansky and Willie have basically scrapped the phenomenon of work from their vocabulary, but still tag along reluctantly in Hannes' dream to live an ordinary middle-class life. Hannes has been in jail for a long time and now wants to start his own honest business. Then Johanna appears, the sixteen-year-old daughter of Hannes. She has a romanticised picture of her father as a cross between Robin Hood and Al Capone. Full of enthusiasm she throws herself into what she thinks is the glamorous world of professional crime. Film-maker Tissi himself says that he doesn't believe in cosy camp-fires amidst the misery, but he does believe in people who believe in that. Sentiment may not warm many fingers, it does at least warm the heart. With his film, he did not want to provide a picture of a social-realist class struggle, but a drama with classic figures. Beckett is tangibly present, but the irony is lighter in tone. As Diogenes philosophised from his barrel, the junk-yard dwellers also have philosophical tendencies, even if they also talk rubbish. Like all great characters, the four each have a secret: Hannes hides it, Johanna looks for it and, unlike Willi, Orlansky is not even aware of it. That probably makes him the real hero of the story.
Director
Felix Tissi
Country of production
Switzerland
Production Year
1995
Festival Edition
IFFR 1996
Length
81'
Medium
35mm
Language
German
Producer
Balzli & Cie
Screenplay
Felix Tissi
Cinematography
Dieter Fahrer
Cast
Jochen Regelien