Locarno FF

Jan Speckenbach – Freedom #Locarno70

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9 min. and 57 sec.

What is freedom, and is it something that can ever be achieved?

Play Podcast
9 min. and 57 sec.

PODCAST | Matt Micucci interviews Jan Speckenbach, director of the film Freedom.

To listen to the interview, click on the ► icon on the right, just above the picture

Director Jan Speckenbach talks about his latest film, Freedom, part of the international competition line-up of the 70th Locarno festival. Speckenback provides us with priceless insight on his method of working and his approach to dealing with the driving concept of the movie, which, as the title suggests, is freedom: a complicated topic and a complicated term. The director made some specific stylistic choices to strengthen this take on the topic through his story about a family coping with the sudden, unwarranted departure of the mother/wife, particularly focusing on the parallel stories of the wife and the husband (played respectively by Johanna Wokalek Hans-Jochen Wagner).

Freedom: a mother goes away, leaving her husband and their two children in limbo. She is driven by a force she cannot ignore: freedom. In Vienna, Nora wanders through a museum, succumbs to a flirtation and then thumbs a lift to Bratislava. Nora conceals her origin behind small lies, changes her appearance, finds work as a chambermaid and makes friends with the young Slovak woman Etela, a stripper, and her husband Tamás, a cook. Meanwhile, in Berlin, Philip tries to keep his family and job as well as his affair with Monika going. Against his own convictions, he, a lawyer, defends a xenophobic youngster, struggles with the role of single parent. Philip finds an – albeit unconscious – ear for his worries in the figure of a coma patient… The freedom Nora is longing for becomes Philip’s chains.

For the official page of the film on the festival website, click here.


  • Reporter
    Matt Micucci
  • Guest
    Jan Speckenbach
  • Interviewee role
  • Film title
  • Festival section
    International competition
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