Starring: Louis Nietsche, Jonas Nay, Paula Kalenberg
Director: Florian Gottschick
Running Time: 88 mins
The Four Of Us (Du Er Sie & Wir) is a German film about four friends who meet at a windswept beach house to assess the results of an audacious month-long experiment.
A film with a very clever premise that’s introduced near-perfectly at the end of its opening ten minutes, The Four Of Us is a darkly comedic drama with a lot of potential, but it oversteps the mark with a screenplay that simply takes its intriguing premise too far.
It’s a little difficult to get into what exactly happens here without spoiling the excellent twist that comes just a few minutes into the film, but the long and short of it is that the four friends who congregate at the beach house don’t end up getting along too well after their ‘experiment’ comes to an end.
There’s tension, drama, anger and everything in between as the quartet come to terms with just what’s happened over the last month, which threatens to destabilise the relationships of both couples involved.
However, all of that comes in the first twenty or so minutes. After the excellent initial revelation, The Four Of Us keeps the stakes and tempo high, pulling out all its aces when it comes to drama and shocks in the first act.
After that, there’s really nowhere for the movie to go, and it deteriorates from a pot bubbling tension into a really rather bland and repetitive affair.
The Four Of Us shares a lot in common with the brilliant Perfect Strangers, as it assesses the breakdown of long-term friendships and relationships as secrets come out in an isolated home environment. However, while Perfect Strangers lets its tension bubble and boil over the course of its entire runtime before finally lighting the fuse, The Four Of Us rather jumps the gun.
As a result, while the first ten or twenty minutes here are both clever, entertaining and full of tension, this film doesn’t offer much else over the remaining hour and a bit. That makes it an overwhelmingly dull watch, which squanders a fantastic premise by rushing it all a little too early. So, that’s why I’m giving The Four Of Us a 5.9 overall.