How About Adolf?

How About Adolf?

Der Vorname
2018
91 minutes
German
Directed by:
Sönke Wortmann

In Sönke Wortmann’s darkly comic “How About Adolf?,” Stephan and wife Elisabeth organize a dinner party for family and friends in celebration of the imminent arrival of the first child of Thomas, Elisabeth’s brother, and his pregnant girlfriend, Anna. Planned as a cozy get-together with family and friends, the evening turns unexpectedly raucous when Thomas teasingly claims that the couple plans to name their child Adolf. The announcement is intended as a joke, but the reaction is so extreme that Thomas never manages to correct the misperception, and a late-arriving Anna — unaware of the imbroglio — only adds to the confusion and upset. The Economist writes: “What makes Claudius Pläging’s script so funny is not its use of black comedy but its insight into family dynamics, where the dispute over the name merely provides a pretext for guests at the table to air stifled grievances (of which there are many). Still, ‘Der Vorname’ ends happily. ‘Families have arguments and disagreements,’ Elisabeth says, ‘but they pull themselves together and get along with each other again.’ Nothing brings more joy, happiness and reconciliation to a family than the birth of a child.”

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