As Green as It Gets Movie Review (In Detail)

Spoilers Alert:

The comedy IT DOESN’T GET GREENER, SAID THE GARDENER AND FLEW AWAY not only has a long title, but also turns out to be a not-so-long odyssey of self-discovery by a grumpy loner. We’ll reveal in our review why this turns out so differently than you would expect.

The Plot Summary

Schorsch is a gardener in a small Bavarian town and toils every day in his business, which is on the verge of bankruptcy. He doesn’t like to talk or talk much. He never has. His marriage to his wife has long been disenchanted and, to make matters worse, his daughter now wants to go to art academy. “Such nonsense!” is all Schorsch can think of. Only above the clouds, in his rickety propeller plane, an old lapwing, does Schorsch feel truly free. But then the boss of the local golf course that Schorsch laid out doesn’t like the green tone of the lawn and Schorsch is left with the bill. When the bailiff wants to seize his beloved plane shortly afterwards, Schorsch sits down in the lapwing, grabs the control stick and simply flies away. Without knowing where to go. A journey begins that takes him to unknown places, full of bizarre and special encounters – and with every takeoff and landing, the gardener slowly opens his heart again to what is called a hint of happiness…

Movie explanation of the ending

At some point in life there comes a point at which most people question their own existence and the meaning of life. For some, this brooding manifests itself in a real life crisis and suddenly not only the wife and children are swapped for a hot young girlfriend, but also the preference for possessions such as motorcycles is rediscovered, or even one’s own vanity. The media also picks up on this phenomenon from time to time. For example, the author Jockel Tschiersch, who tells about exactly such a contemporary in his novel “It won’t get any greener, the gardener said and flew away”. A contemporary who actually has everything and whose routine is suddenly thrown out of balance when he loses an assignment that pushes him to the brink of ruin. In the film adaptation of the same name by Florian Gallenberger (“Colonia Dignidad”) The main character Schorsch is played by Elmar Wepper (“lommbuck”) played; an actor who seems predestined to embody another grumpy loner. The structure and, above all, the outcome of the story seem pretty obvious from this introduction. The fact that Gallenberger presents his flying road movie about a hobby pilot who breaks out of his everyday life as a pleasant, feel-good comedy underlines the first impression. In terms of narrative, however, Gallenberger makes it anything but easy for his characters and so “It Won’t Get Greener” is a far more ambitious film than one might think at first glance.

Gardener Schorsch (Elmar Wepper) and his client Dr. Starcke (Bernd Stegemann) examines the green of the golf course lawn

“It doesn’t get any greener, said the gardener and flew away” is primarily about Schorsch, but on the way from his southern USA home towards Antarctica he also meets all sorts of different men and women, all of whom have various problems of their own are burdened. In order for the fates to develop in a positive direction for everyone involved, the screenwriters would have to have Gernot Griksch (“Happy Burnout”) and Gallenberger himself use the whole potpourri of narrative construction, which usually affects credibility. However, Griksch and Gallenberger are not even interested in that. Instead, the script deals in detail with the peculiarities and backstories of all the main and secondary characters, allows them to experience a believable development and, at the latest in the final act, releases them into a scenario that is as lifelike as possible. This also means that “It Doesn’t Get Greener” doesn’t have a happy ending for every character. (Step) parents have to do without their daughter until further notice and sometimes a divorce is the best solution for everyone involved. The fact that the film never veers into overly dramatic territory could offend lovers of overly realistic productions; Gallenberger sets clear accents with his colorful production and his lively narrative pace, which he also repeatedly enriches with dry situational comedy: his film is definitely a comedy, albeit with a tragic touch every now and then.

The ensemble brings to life a colorful arsenal of characters whose different orientations are initially irritating and cast the film itself in a slightly indecisive light at the beginning. When Schorsch comes across the von Zeydlitz family’s country estate during one of his flying visits, you sometimes feel like you’re in an over-the-top grotesque; Ulrich Tukur plays so exaggeratedly and affectedly (“Out of nowhere”) and Sunnyi Melles (“Safari – Match Me If You Can”) on. The daughter Philomena, who constantly runs around in a bunny costume and matches everything and everyone around her, also fits into the image of the family, but not at all into that of the rest of the film. Only when Schorsch and Philomena leave the large property together does the interaction between them normalize and the cliché of a difficult to raise, rebellious daughter becomes a likeable girl with real problems and a very sad backstory. A visit to her grandmother, who is in a same-sex relationship, finally brings “It doesn’t get any greener” back down to earth and Gallenberger finds a harmonious balance between optimism and realism until the end when he takes on the fates of his warm-hearted characters.

Emma Bading once again proves to be a promising young actress in “It Won’t Get Greener”.

“It doesn’t get any greener, said the gardener and flew away” is shown next to the beautiful landscape panoramas of largely untouched and therefore unused areas of land for the screen (camera: Daniela Knapp, “Glistening happiness”), especially from the actors. The ensemble consists equally of long-established character actors and newcomers, who never steal each other’s show and none of whom push themselves uncomfortably into the foreground. Even if Elmar Wepper leads the ensemble simply because of his protagonist position, it is above all Emma Bading who stands out (“My devilishly good friend”), which makes her character more than just a classic “problem child”. With her open nature, she says what she thinks honestly and directly. And she doesn’t just offend her much older companions every now and then (“When did you actually have your first time?”), but also surprises the viewer in almost every scene in which she appears. “Tatort” star Dagmar Manzel also stands out. In her role as Hannah, who manages an airport alone, she acts almost passively in her reserve towards her colleagues and thus maintains a pleasant form of aloofness for a long time. As she becomes more offensive over time, she underlines the saying of deep still waters and adds another exciting character to the cast. Monika Baumgartner (“The old”) and Tilman Pörzgen (“launching trip”) round off the harmonious, excellently coordinated ensemble.

Conclusion: Florian Gallenberger doesn’t make things easy for himself with his feel-good self-discovery comedy “It doesn’t get any greener, said the gardener and flew away” and tries to convey a positive feeling that seems real and not contrived, despite many different sources of fire. And what can I say: he managed to do exactly that. A feel-good film that you can appreciate all of its positive and negative developments at any time.

“It doesn’t get any greener, said the gardener and flew away” can be seen in USA cinemas from August 30th.

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