Die verlorene Ehre der Katharina Blum

Director Volker Schlöndorff / 1975 / Germany

Katharina Blum is a divorcee, young, attractive and shy. At a party, she meets a young man and they go back to her apartment. In the morning, heavily armed police burst in, but the young man has already left. The police suspect he is a terrorist and they have been following him for some time. Katharina is taken to the police station and relentlessly questioned. Coincidental evidence appears to blacken the case against her, and she is paraded across the front pages of a city newspaper, portrayed as a whore, an atheist, a Communist sympathizer. She becomes the target of anonymous phone calls and letters, sexual advances and threats. Katharina is released by the police, but she is followed everywhere; her friends and neighbours desert her. A ruthless journalist interviews her ex-husband, her boss, and gravely ill mother. Finally, when he makes a new advance to Katharina, she reacts violently.

The film is based on a story by Nobel Prize winner Heinrich Boll, and directed by Volker Schlondorff, who earlier made Young Torless.

'Pic is a slick work of great precision in all departments, very rich in observation of minute detail, almost unerring in its clinical development of a plot which, in other guises, has been seen before but rarely to such effect.'

Hawk, Variety

Catholic Board Award, San Sebastian 1975

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