, , ,

Hannah Arendt is a misfire of a film, an unfortunate squandering of so much dramatic potential. It tells the story of philosopher Arendt’s controversial reportage on the Eichmann trial of 1961, and her insistence that he was simply a mediocre man, following orders and unable to ‘think’ for himself. The subplot concerns her affair and troubled relationship with Nazi-sympathiser, the philosopher Heidegger. In both cases, the drama is lost in a series of flat, over-talky scenes. The Heidegger subplot needed far more development; but even the main plot does not become clear until the halfway mark. Throughout, the audience was tittering uneasily at some of the dialogue which (awkwardly) approached humour, because it just didn’t know how to take scenes which lacked both drama and comedy. The plot feels muddy, with developments that seem like they will be significant only to fizzle out. It’s a great pity, as the themes are worthy and the story significant.