The Tobacconist (Der Trafikant)

Sunday, May 19
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1hr 48mins // directed by:Nikolaus Leytner // featuring:Bruno Ganz // in German with English subtitles

Part of The National Center for Jewish Film's Annual Film Festival. Co-presented by the Goethe Institute Boston.

Vienna under Nazi occupation is the setting for this ravishingly-shot wartime drama about a young man and his unlikely friendship with Sigmund Freud. 17-year-old Franz (the charismatic Simon Morze) works as an apprentice at a tobacco shop where the psychoanalyst (Bruno Ganz, DownfallWings of Desire) is a regular customer, and the two develop an immediate bond. When Franz falls desperately in love with a music hall dancer named Anezka, he turns to Freud for advice, who tells him the female sex remains as mysterious to him as it was when he was Franz’s age. As war approaches and the city descends into turmoil, the dramas of this young man’s life are swept up into the larger maelstrom of events. Based on the international bestseller by Robert Seethaler, starring acclaimed actor Bruno Ganz in one of his final screen performances. 

“A World War II-era story told with unusual sensitivity…a stunning recreation of the late 1930s in Vienna…[the] voluptuous filmmaking…expertly captures the tensions in the Austrian capital on the eve of Hitler’s takeover…Actors shine in a–literally–Freudian romance.” — Hollywood Reporter