★★★★ | Berlin Syndrome
A young Australian woman visiting Berlin meets who she thinks is a perfect man but then he turns out to be too good to be true.
In the new movie Berlin Syndrome, Is it a game or is it a nightmare? When Clare (Teresa Palmer) meets Andi (Max Riernelt) by chance on a Berlin street, she can’t resist his charms and good looks. She was planning on going to Dresden the next day but instead, she changes her plans to go out on a date with him. The date turns into a one-night stand, at Andi’s flat, in an isolated building in the middle of nowhere that’s typically Berlin. The next day, as Andi goes to his teaching job, Clare wakes up and realises she can’t get out of his flat as the front door and the windows are locked. She’s not too concerned about it because she assumes that Andi just forgot to leave her the key. He comes home from work and they spend the night in Andi’s flat having a romantic dinner, and Clare can’t resist spending another night there. When Andi does leave the key for her the next morning, Clare attempts to open the front door are futile – it’s actually locked from the outside. It’s at this point that Clare starts to panic. She breaks one of the living room windows only to discover it’s double glazed and can’t break the second window. And it’s only a matter of time until Andi comes home from work that their relationship takes a turn from a romantic one to a one fraught with panic, danger and suspense for Clare as she does not know what’s going to happen next. Minutes turn into hours which turn into days and Clare is fraught with more terror as she does not know what Andi has in store for her.
Berlin Syndrome is almost two hours long, but it’s a film that will make your heart beat a bit faster, and will keep you holding your breath – it’s that suspenseful. Director Cate Shortland has given us a woman’s survival story, that, while the finale is a bit predictable and silly, starts out pure and innocent but then turns into a nightmare. It’ll make you have second thoughts the next time a guy invites you back to his place.
Berlin Syndrome is now playing.