Starring: Olaf Schubert, Marie Leuenberger, Mario Adorf
Director: Lars Büchel
Running Time: 94 mins
Schubert In Love is a German film about an eccentric man who is forced to find a wife to bear him a son after his aging father makes a request while lying on his death bed. However, finding a suitable mate is hard for him, not to mention going the distance.
With a quirky and impressively lovable atmosphere, Schubert In Love is a pretty pleasant watch throughout, combining a heap of awkward mishaps and good, self-deprecating humour that make for a good few laughs, furthered by three strong central performances that all bring a bit of wonderfully weird character to proceedings.
Let’s start off with the film’s strong suit, which undoubtedly lies in its quirkiness. Now, being quirky alone isn’t enough to make a film funny or likable, and many, many indie comedies have fallen by the wayside in thinking just that, but Schubert In Love brings its quirky qualities to life fairly well throughout.
Above all, it’s the awkward nature of the central relationship between our main man, a nerdy and incredibly awkward middle-aged man, and a studious, somewhat pent-up woman. You’ll have seen stories with a similar premise before, centring on two outsiders coming together and showing that anyone can find love, but what makes this one entertaining is its weirdness.
The two characters’ dialogue scenes together are great to watch, as they seem to be having some fairly strict and sharp arguments, compounded by their many personality clashes, but that, in tandem with the self-deprecating German humour that plays into a national stereotype, is actually pretty funny to watch, as you see two people grow closer and closer in what looks like the most unnatural relationship ever shown on the big screen.
Secondly, the various supporting characters all bring some good fun to the film. The two leads’ relationship is good to watch, but the series of clashes and disputes that our main man also has with the likes of his father (who seems unkillable until he is given a grandson), his boss, or any manner of local resident, are just as entertaining, and further the film’s strongly awkward atmosphere that makes it enjoyable and properly quirky throughout.
When it comes to problems, however, I’d have to say that Schubert In Love, whilst quirky and enjoyable, isn’t the world’s most memorable film. It’s got the charm and low-key weirdness to make you laugh and smile from time to time, but there is something about its very small-scale and rather quiet atmosphere that makes it rather unremarkable.
Following a premise that has been done many times before, it’s only the comedic elements of this film that make the awkward romance entertaining, but not in such an original or striking way to make it really stand out in your mind among the rest of the genre’s films, something that did frustrate me when I came to realise that the film just didn’t feel all that satisfying after finishing.
On the whole, Schubert In Love is a cute and weird little film that does well to make you laugh and give you a pleasant time with its quirky humour throughout. It’s by no means a stellar or truly memorable watch, and although you’ll surely enjoy it at the time, it’s not a film that will really stand out in your memory even short after finishing, so that’s why I’ll give it a 7.1.