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Kottan ermittelt: Rien ne va plus

Austria 2010
produced by
Heinrich Ambrosch, Kurt J. Mrkwicka for Satel Film, ORF
directed by Peter Patzak
starring Lukas Resetarits, Udo Samel, Johannes Krisch, Robert Stadlober, Wolfgang Böck, Simon Schwarz, Hanno Pöschl, Bibiane Zeller, Mavie Hörbiger, Erni Mangold, Gerti Drassl, Nina Fog, Chris Lohner, Erich Schleyer, Branko Samarovski, Cornelius Obonya, Karl Ferdinand Kratzl, Julian Sharp, Ernst Konarek, András Gönczöl, Marcus Thill, Sami Loris, Franz Suhrada, Michaela Mock, Bigi Fischer, Elke Winkens, Dorothea Parton, Maddalena Hirschal, Margit Gara, Karina Sarkissova, Melanie Kretschmann, Mario Rauscher, Christoph F. Krutzler, Clemens Aap Lindenberg, Johnny K. Palmer, Yunus Evren, Benjamin Ulbrich, Erich Joham, Elias Pressler, Timo Niermann, Alfred Polansky, Christoph Langecker, Anna Maria Krassnigg, Alice Firenze, Iliana Chivarova, Elisabeth Golibina, Rafaella Sant'Anna, Taina Ferreira, Franziska Hollinek-Wallner, Martina Enzmann, Karla Zenker, Pamela Obiniana, Mischa Sosnovschi, Vladimir Shishov, Gabi Neuner, Karl Blecha, Dieter Gölsdorf
story and characters by Peter Patzak, Helmut Zenker, screenplay by Jan Zenker, Kottan ermittelt created by Helmut Zenker, music by Christian Kolonovits, Fabian Patzak

Kottan ermittelt, Kottan (Lukas Resetarits)

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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A murder spree is shaking the foundations of the city, but not that any of this would concern Kottan (Lukas Resetarits), who has been suspended from his job at Homicide for over two decades now - well, not until one of the victims (Mario Rauscher) lands on the roof of his car. President of police Pilch (Udo Samel), who had Kottan suspended all those years ago, now begs him to come back on the force, as Hofbauer (Wolfgang Böck), a successful squad leader, wants his job and might succeed even. After some to and fro, Kottan agrees to help out and is soon reunited with his old team - Schremser (Johannes Krisch) and Schrammel (Robert Stadlober) -, and soon comes up with a clue that all those killed have won €1 million in some lottery and have then joined a game called Rien ne va plus, which is basically a last-man-standing game. And quite in line with the game's rules (if not the rule of law), someone's bumping off the participants. Things get interesting when a man is killed posing as Dr. Herzer (Erich Schleyer), who runs the lottery. And then Herzer is killed as well, and it turns out he has joined (or seems to have joined) Rien ne va plus. Ultimately, it's revealed that the game was a plot by Hofbauer and Herzer's wife Marianne (Mavie Hörbiger), and ultimately both get their just desserts - in a way that Kottan is suspended from police duty yet again ...

 

Released a whopping 27 years after the last new episode of the TV series was originally aired, Kottan ermittelt: Rien ne va plus brought some kind of closure to fans of the series that was discontinued back when on the height of its popularity without rhyme or reason. And in a way that's nice, as it's good to see the anarchic humour return to the screen in a time when cinema as a whole was increasingly becoming an overly regulated medium, at least in the mainstream sector. But it's also a problem, because Kottan ermittelt: Rien ne va plus feels mostly like fan service, as while many of the original cast were already deceased and had to be replaced, the film does its best to resurrect the feel and humour of the series, and as an effect doesn't give newcomers any chance to get into the movie for its own rights. That's also because characterization isn't the strong side of the film to begin with, but with most regular characters, it's just for the audience to know them from earlier. Likewise some of the better jokes (like constant mentions of coffee dispending machines) reference the series, while others are really just old jokes warmed up, like bicycles crashing into opening car doors. In that respect also the writing is somewhat inconsequential, as it doesn't really just concentrate on the murder spree at hand but also tries to continue narrative threads from 27 years ago, losing the casual viewer in the process. The other thing is, the film doesn't seem nearly as fresh as the series, and it's not only the repetition of old jokes and lip-synced musical numbers, but also the unwillingness to add new ideas - well, apart from a floating dog and bits of so-so animation, which neither come across as especially original or drive the film - though the dog as an instrumental role in catching one of the villains at least.

In all, the film isn't terrible, at least if one's fond of the series in some way, but it feels like a wasted opportunity.

 

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review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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