‘Alles Ist Gut’ Review: Surviving Sexual Assault, and All the Mornings After
Janne doesn’t want anyone to worry about her. Not her boyfriend, Piet (Andreas Döhler), who’s still smarting from the failure of their shared publishing venture. Not her new boss, Robert (Tilo Nest), who has generously offered her a temp editing job at his own publishing house. Not even the man who raped her, the extremely apologetic Martin (Hans Löw).
Debuting on Netflix, Eva Trobisch’s searing first feature film, “Alles Ist Gut” (literal translation: “All Is Well”), has a title that functions as a mantra for Janne (Aenne Schwarz), whose instinct for self-preservation leads her to defuse conflict and redirect the volatile creatures in her orbit. Trobisch has made a drama of tragic accommodation — limited not to one woman’s sexual assault, but to the everyday interactions that all women must navigate carefully.
Trobisch directs in fragmented scenes that always cut a beat or two short of expectation, like little shards of glass, and Schwarz makes Janne’s actions comprehensible at every turn as her troubles slowly and inexorably deepen. The rape itself, which takes place after a boozy class reunion, is treated with a deceptive matter-of-factness. It’s a quick and terrible end to a nightcap, and while Janne’s initial instinct is to sleep it off, the trauma lingers.
Telling anyone is a nonstarter because Martin is her boss’s brother-in-law and a colleague she has to work alongside every day. Martin’s need for absolution is another weight she is forced to carry, as if his shame were equivalent to her violation. Trobisch and Schwarz conceive Janne as a determined, courageous soul who’s trying to make the best of a bad situation, for everyone. Her knees buckle from the burden.
Alles Ist Gut
Not rated. In German, with English subtitles. Running time: 1 hour 33 minutes.