A refugee steals the identity of a dead writer, then finds himself haunted by his new self’s past, in this existentialist mystery.
As German forces close in on modern-day France, Jewish refugee Georg is desperate to evacuate the war-torn continent. His golden ticket comes in the form of transit papers to Mexico, belonging to a recently deceased author. Georg assumes this identity and flees to the port city of Marseille—then finds that the transit visa was not the only thing the writer left behind.
Rather than update Anna Seghers’s eponymous WWII novel to a present-day setting, director Christian Petzold completely dislocates it from history. Aided by Franz Rogowski’s measured turn as a man haunted by the ghosts of war, Petzold turns Marseille into an anachronistic limbo, overflowing with stories that seem ripped from tomorrow’s headlines. Transit is a Kafkaesque Casablanca born from the contemporary refugee crisis.
Cast & Credits
Christian Petzold is a German director who graduated from the Deutsche Film- und Fernsehakademie Berlin in 1994. He has been recognised as a forerunner of the Berlin School film movement. His past films include Barbara (2012), for which he won Best Director at the 62nd Berlinale, and the critically acclaimed Phoenix (2014).
Florian Koerner von Gustorf, Michael Weber
Franz Rogowski, Paula Beer, Lilien Batman
*In Competition, Berlin International Film Festival 2018
*Official Selection, Toronto International Film Festival 2018
*In Competition, Sydney Film Festival 2018