Filmmaker David Sieveking introduces us with astonishing candour to the life of his mother Gretel, an Alzheimer’s patient. His father Malte has been taking care of Gretel ever since he retired. The still youthful mathematics professor had imagined life after university a little differently, because it takes a lot of strength and time to care constantly for a person who forgets everything. Wants to go home even though she is at home. Refuses to co-operate and prefers to stay in bed. The son moves back home for a few weeks with a small film crew to relieve his father and document daily life with a dementia patient from up close. Sieveking uses the chance to get closer to his mother again. The more Gretel takes her leave from this world, the more Sieveking finds out about her and her past. Leftist revolutionary groups, an “open relationship”, women’s circles. Malte decides to read his wife’s diaries. The son talks to his father, his mother’s lover and her female friends. A biography gradually takes shape.
This quiet, touching film is a declaration of love for a mother and a family, but also a gradual farewell from a woman who may still be physically present but has long since become a different person.
The film goes theatrical January 31, 2013 in german and swiss theaters. It already won several awards among others the Locarno Critics Price, Hessischer Film Price, Goethe Institute Award @ the Doc Leipzig 2012. Just recently the film is being pre-nominated for the german film award LOLA.