"Harrowing Coming of Age Tale"
LORE is an Australian movie in German about the coming-of-age of the teenage daughter of a Nazi SS officer left to fend for her younger siblings when her parents flee or are arrested. It’s a harrowing tale of lost innocence in the midst of war and genocide.
As the Russians and the Allies march on Berlin, Lore’s father takes his wife and children to a safe house in the woods. Her father never returns and her mother is ordered to town, where she’s arrested. Lore decides to take her younger sister and twin brothers to her grandmother’s house miles away in the north. Along the way, a young Jewish refugee named Thomas helps them, but he’s not what he appears to be. Also, Lore is shattered to learn of her father’s involvement in the genocide of the Jewish populace.
LORE moves a little too slow, but it’s a well-made production with some riveting, heartbreaking moments. It’s based on a novel, THE DARK ROOM, written by Rachel Seiffert, who was born in England to German and Australian parents.
Sadly, the story is a tale about the broken spirit of a teenage girl, who watches one of her younger brothers die and helps kill a man so she can steal his boat and get to safety. It’s the latter scene that requires the most extreme caution. In that scene, Lore distracts the man sexually so Thomas can sneak up on him and bash his head in with a rock. That experience haunts Lore at the end of the movie, where she smashes all the delicate little ceramic knick-knacks in her room at her grandmother’s house. Her life will never be the same happy time she experienced as a child. Before she realized the depth of her father’s crimes, her country’s crimes, and the depth of her own. It’s a bitter, depressing ending that seems to offer little hope.
(PaPa, HH, B, C, L, VV, SS, NN, A, D, MM) Strong mixed or pagan worldview with some humanist content and some moral, religious content but the movie’s tone is humanist overall because of its depressing ending of lost innocence; six obscenities (including one “f” word by a soldier) and two light obscenities; strong violence with some blood includes some Holocaust photos, young man bashes fat man’s head with a rock till he dies, and little boy shot as he runs in the woods and his body falls; some strong sexual content includes explicit nudity, married couple kisses as husband fondles wife’s breast, teenage girl looks at her full nude body in mirror, young man lifts girls skirt with his hand as he feels partly up her leg, teenage girl lures older man with her body so young man can kill him from behind with a rock; full female nudity in one shot, upper female nudity in two other scenes, plus woman breastfeeds two babies; alcohol use; smoking; and, teenage daughter of Nazi SS officer buries photo linking him to Holocaust war crimes during World War II, some Germans make up stories about Holocaust photos being staged, lying.