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Agnes and His Brothers
Agnes and His Brothers
Actors: Martin Wei├?, Moritz Bleibtreu, Herbert Knaup, Katja Riemann, Tom Schilling
Genres: Indie & Art House, Comedy, Drama
UR     2006     1hr 55min

Agnes and his brothers have little in common except an eccentric father, relationship problems that are totally screwing up their lives, and a distinct possibility those two things are connected. Sex addict /meek libraria...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Martin Wei├?, Moritz Bleibtreu, Herbert Knaup, Katja Riemann, Tom Schilling
Genres: Indie & Art House, Comedy, Drama
Sub-Genres: Indie & Art House, Comedy, Love & Romance, Family Life
Studio: First Run Features
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen - Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 12/19/2006
Original Release Date: 01/01/2005
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2005
Release Year: 2006
Run Time: 1hr 55min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 4
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Languages: English, German
Subtitles: English

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Movie Reviews

Dysfunctionality Raised to the Twelfth Power
H. F. Corbin | ATLANTA, GA USA | 04/17/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)

"German Director Oskar Roehler's "Agnes and His Brothers" raises a family's dysfunctionality to an art form. It is all about a father, who may have molested one of them-- and his three sons. Agnes (Martin Weiss) is a transgendered dancer in an abusive relationship; Werner (Herbert Knaup is a member of parliament-- obsessed with his own bodily functions-- whose wife has fallen out of love with him and whose son ridicules him openly; and Hans-Jorg (Moritz Bleibtreu) calls himself a sex addict. He gets off watching through a peephole in a restroom young women relieving themselves not unlike a nonfiction senator from Idaho recently caught in a men's room-- Hans gets caught as well-- except this is the heterosexual version of events. These three siblings are weird in their own unique ways. The film is laced through and through with humor, not the least of which are the scenes when Hans attends meetings for sex addicts.

Although the events do not always work, the director's statement about the significance of families, even with all their fault lines is well worth watching. In their own strange way-- and strange it is-- these brothers care about each other."
Freud ala Fassbinder
Amos Lassen | Little Rock, Arkansas | 12/14/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)


Freud ala Fassbinder

Amos Lassen and Cinema Pride

First Run Films has released a modern classic on DVD, "Agnes and His Brothers", a tale of existential darkness, ironic satire and deep tenderness. The film gives a new look at what family is all about and it is wonderful. Directed by Oskar Roehler, we have a tribute to the great films of Werner Fassbinder in this powerful German story.
Agnes (Martin Weiss) and his brothers have little in common, save a father who is every bit the eccentric. Their lives are anything but regular and their relationships are extremely weird. Hans-Jorg (Moritz Bleibtreu) is a victim of sexual frustration which he attempts to mask behind the guise of a meek librarian. He is totally obsessed with masturbation and his uneasiness and awkwardness with women. His life changes rapidly when he finds suitable outlets for his anger. Another brother, Werner (Herbert Knaup) is a politician who is constantly at odds with his family whose marriage is based upon petty fights between himself and his wife, Signe (Katja Riemann--who is amazing). His son is a pot smoking rebel. Agnes cannot get away from the fact that her mother haunts him (whom she never ever knew) and is possessed by the fact that she was once a man. (Yes you read that correctly).But Agnes has one thing that her brothers don't have and that is the ability to face life head-on. With these issues facing the family alongside of the desires for sex, love and understanding, we watch as the family becomes closer and closer to the edge of non-being and are at the brink of explosion. This is not only a film about family but about Germany in the modern day. The three brothers simply represent the modern German nation with all of its problems.
What I found wonderful about the film is how much was left unsaid and unresolved. Was there abuse going on between father and sons? All of the sons have some unfinished issues with the father. We never know and even if we did, truth is never the same for all people.
Agnes is the voice of reason and the fact that she had a sex change operation is never a question as she is totally accepted in her family. As is often dome by other moviemakers, the gender issue which usually is a major force, is a non issue here.
The actors are amazing, each and every one but the squalor f humanity as depicted here sometimes detracts from this beautiful film. The real problems which are explored here are presented in an entertaining manner and give great insight into what constitutes a family. The film is really three separate stories held together by a mutual distrust for the father. The mysticism of the film is what makes it so engrossing.
I have read some extremely negative reviews and although many of them have had some really nasty things to say, all of the reviewers agree on the brilliance of the cast and rightfully so. Performances like the ones in the film are rare.
The movie is sometimes perverse and sometimes funny, sometimes melancholy and sometimes romantic but it is slick and ambitious. For the performances alone, I strongly recommend the movie. I personally loved it but let me leave that decision to you.