Guided by a pitch-perfect jazz soundtrack, we watch our hero meander through a day and night in Berlin, unable to catch a break from his girlfriend, his therapist, his father or overeager baristas. Niko’s gift/curse is to be the sounding board for the other characters as well as the punching bag for daily life’s little potshots.
Schilling’s underplayed character allows the psychoses of those around him to bubble up into perfect comedy, getting laughs from melancholy and arousing sympathy for the young man who seems resigned to not ever being able to make sense of it all. Set this all in one of the best portrayals of contemporary Berlin ever (not too hipster postcard, not too Christiane F.), and you’ve got something destined to be an international art-house hit.
Oh Boy | Directed by Jan Ole Gerster (Germany 2012) with Tom Schilling, Friederike Kempter, Marc Hoseman. Starts November 1