Barfuss

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Barfuss
Barfuss film.jpg
Directed by Til Schweiger
Written by Story By Stephen Zotnowski Screenplay By Til Schweiger
Jann Preuss
Nika von Altenstadt
Stephen Zotnowski
Starring Til Schweiger
Johanna Wokalek
Music by Ray Collins Hot Club (title song 'Barefoot')
Production
  company
Filmstiftung Nordrhein-Westfalen
Mr. Brown Entertainment
barefoot films
Distributed by Buena Vista International
Release date(s) 2005
Running time 118 minutes
Country Germany
Language German

Barfuss (English: Barefoot) is a romantic comedy film by German actor and director Til Schweiger released in 2005. It tells the story of Nick (Til Schweiger), a hedonistic bachelor, who helps and eventually falls in love with Leila, an escaped mental patient portrayed by Johanna Wokalek. Schweiger also co-wrote the screenplay which is based on the original English screenplay and story "Barefoot" by American screenwriter Stephen Zotnowski.

An American remake, Barefoot was released in 2014.

Plot[edit]

The life of Nick Keller (Til Schweiger) can hardly be called well sorted. He stumbles from one temporary job to the next, and he has very serious problems with Heinrich, his rich and influential stepfather, as well as with his brother Viktor. Nick’s latest temporary job is as a cleaner in a psychiatric clinic, where he prevents the barefooted patient Leila (Wokalek) from committing suicide just as he is being fired from this latest employment.

Leila’s story is also complex. The first nineteen years of her life she had been confined at home by her mother. She has been hospitalized in the clinic after her mother's death, but is desperate to leave. However, emotionally Leila is still a child. For example, everything that she is told, she takes literally; and she dislikes physical contact with strangers. The unexpected consequence of Nick’s saving Leila from hanging herself is that Leila secretly follows her saviour, in her nightdress and once again barefooted; and she appears in front of his door that night. After Leila adamantly refuses go back to the clinic, she and Nick go on a road trip together in order to attend his brother’s wedding to Nick's ex-girlfriend. During the trip the relationship between the two deepens significantly. However, after serious disputes with his family, Nick once again tries to hospitalize Leila. As a result, he has to confess to himself that he has fallen in love with her.

Nick is then arrested for attempted kidnapping, and Leila is brought back to the clinic. Nick pretends to have mental problems so he can go into the clinic with Leila, but only after Leila once again attempts suicide does her doctor admit him. The last scene shows them together shopping in a supermarket some months later, after their release from the clinic.

Cast[edit]

Actor Role
Til Schweiger Nick Keller
Johanna Wokalek Leila
Nadja Tiller Frau Keller
Michael Mendl Heinrich Keller
Steffen Wink Viktor Keller
Alexandra Neldel Janine
Imogen Kogge Dr. Blöchinger
Janine Kunze Sarah Sommer
Stefanie Stappenbeck Jessica
Axel Stein truck driver
Markus Maria Profitlich car dealer 1
Mark Keller car dealer 2
Éric Judor L'homme

Critical response[edit]

Despite some critical views, the film was generally well received and was awarded the German Media Award Bambi as the best German movie of 2005.

External links[edit]