The movie is set in the pre-World War I days in Germany. It opens up with an ambitious young man Friederich, getting a job and then becoming indispensable to his boss, Karl Hoffmeister. Friederich then meets the boss’ attractive young wife and before you know it he it tutoring their son.
Friederich and Lotte become very close. Like most of Patrice Leconte’s movies it moves very slowly as it closely examines its characters. We see Friedrich falling in love, as he continues to make Karl’s factory more efficient. Friedrich follows Lotte to church. He plays with Lotte and her son, Otto, in the yard.
We see Friedrich’s infatuation growing as he begins to ignore his girlfriend. When Friederich tells Lotte that they must stop living a lie, she gets mad at him. When Karl has a stroke Friederich helps Lotte with him.
Karl then tells Friederich that he wants him to go to a new business they are starting up in Mexico for two years. When Friederich tells Lotte she gets really upset. Now he realizes she loves him too. Friederich goes and they are both miserable.
When the war breaks out Lotte has trouble getting Friederich’s letters and hers are returned, and she is in a panic.
Before Karl dies he tells Lotte that he knew she loved Friederich. The years go by and they are separated for six years. They have not communicated for four years, but Lotte keeps writing.
The war ends and Germany has lost the war, but Lotte doesn’t care. Then Friederich returns. He tells Lotte that he is back in Germany on business, He is now settled in Mexico.
Friederich is kind of cold and their relationship seems to be over. Lotte Tells Friederich she hasn’t forgotten her promise. The next thing you know they are on a train together and they are back together. Now we see Nazis marching out on the streets.
A movie that didn’t get great reviews, but I enjoyed it. Slow moving, interesting character studies.