Film Review

Film title
Cate Shortland
Saskia Rosendahl, Kai-Peter Malina, Nele Trebs
Release date
27 May

More info

Released on DVD and Blu-ray by Artificial Eye www.artificial-eye.com


4/5 stars
Film review by Chris Buckle.
Published 27 May 2013

Adapted from Rachel Seiffert’s 2001 novel The Dark Room, Lore presents the dissolution of the Third Reich through the eyes of a teenage girl raised in its midst, her family’s pro-Nazi world view capsized by defeat. The titular protagonist (impressively played by Saskia Rosendahl in her screen debut) is a complex creation – too young to share her parents’ complicity, but having assimilated their anti-Semitic values nonetheless. This mix of innocence and ignominy creates a keen dramatic tension, keeping audience sympathies tentative and in flux.

Tasked with looking after her younger siblings following her parents’ arrest, the plot follows Lore’s journey through occupied Germany – a tumult of grief, guilt and denial pervaded by terrible suffering. With careful poetry, director and co-writer Cate Shortland builds an immersive narrative from vivid, sensory details, lingering on the crunch of eggshells underfoot or the revulsive intimacy of ants crawling on corpses. The result is a stimulating portrayal of an under-examined aspect of Nazism’s terrible legacy. [Chris Buckle]