If intensity is required in a female character then German actress Nina Hoss is your woman. She brings plenty of gravitas to whatever she is doing. The fact that Anna is leading a rather complex does not seem to phase the talented actress.
When she sees the promise of a great talent Anna Bronsky (Nina Hoss – Barbara, A Most Wanted Man) will fight for them. A violin teacher at the Conservatoire, Anna is a serious woman and fights against her colleagues for the admission of a young violinist she thinks has lots of unrealized potential.
She begins working with Alexander (Ilja Monti – first film) preparing him for the end of year exam. They work harder and harder. This comes at the expense of her own son, Jonas (Serafin Mishiev – first film), who also plays violin and hockey. Anna’s dedication to her student also begins to affect her marriage to Philippe (Simon Abkarian – Casino Royale, To Take a Wife) and reignites something she used to have with fellow teacher Christian (Jens Albinus – Antichrist).
After all this sacrifice by both Anna and Alexander the day of the final exam does not go as either would have hoped. There is an accident which brings about things no one could have predicted.
Though there is plenty of stuff going on underneath the surface the film has a rather even pace to it. Some might see it as boring but what is actually is going on not being fully explained. Things just fall into place slowly. Piece by piece. In a rather somber way. Just don’t mistake that for thinking nothing is going on.
Being surprised in a film is a good thing. Suspense keeps you involved. Constantly wondering what is going to happen next. Twists are not bad things unless done poorly. Here there is a twist and it is quite silly. Making no sense then to compound that the credits just start rolling. Leaves you with a rather bad taste in your mouth.