One of the lesser-known films included in yesterday’s TIFF line up announcement, that we are no less excited for, is Australian helmer Cate Shortland‘s sophomore directorial effort, “Lore.” An adaptation of Rachel Seiffert‘s novella “The Dark Room,” the German-language post-WWII road film stars newcomer Saskia Rosendahl as the daughter of an SS officer who must take her four siblings on a 900km journey across war-ravaged Germany to the safety of their grandparents’ residence.
The film premiered at the Sydney Film Festival last month to critical acclaim and now, on the back of its TIFF inclusion, the first trailer for the film has debuted over at SMH. Considering Shortland, who made her mark with debut “Somersault” starring Abbie Cornish and Sam Worthington, is teaming here with “Animal Kingdom” and “The Hunter” DoP Adam Arkapaw, it’s no surprise the film looks gorgeous, particularly the beautiful German countryside, contrasting nicely with the sensitive material and the fight for survival that faces the group of child protagonists.
Rosendal is already turning heads with her performance, that not only finds her leading her siblings on a dangerous journey, but also sees her forced to trust a charismatic and intriguing Jewish refugee named Thomas, the one person they’ve always been taught is the enemy. One review predicted that “everyone will surely hail Rosendahl as an exciting new talent” as she “essays her complex role with a maturity and assurance that keeps her character compelling despite being impossible to like for almost the entire film.”
Indie distributor Music Box Films has already picked up the film with no release planned as yet, though surely some festival buzz out of TIFF will change that.