Germany | France 2012
Starts April 18
Directed by: Andrea Thiele, Lia Jaspers
Writing credits: Lia Jaspers
Cast: Hye-Won Chung, Jacob Cates, Mirela Sarnardzija
Length: 84 minutes
Jake is an American living in Tokyo. Mirela is German and lives in Mumbai. Hye-Won comes from South Korea and lives in Munich. All three are trying to start new careers. Jake wants a job in graphic design and decided on Tokyo instead of New York City. Mirela wants to design clothes and chose India for its vibrant fabrics. Hye-Won followed her husband to Munich with their young son and wants to study music. Jake misses the independence of jumping in his car to go where he wants. Mirela is fed up with hired cars breaking down. Hye-Won wants to drive again after being involved in a car accident in Korea. All three embark on the tedious trip of getting local drivers' licenses.
Many cultural differences become clear behind the wheel. Jake's instructor Tetsuya tells Jake that, "You can't drive a car like you ride a horse in the Wild West." He makes Jake drive endless circles to teach him how to ease off the gas pedal in curves. Mirela learns she must keep her window down so she can signal her intentions with hand motions that feel like yoga moves. A smile gets her a license. Hye-Won finds the priority rules in Germany confusing and the clutch a challenge. She jokes about her instructor's name: Krieger. Different aspects of the cities are interestingly filmed. Moving from place to person, this docu-drama-comedy by Andrea Thiele and Lia Jaspers combines vignettes into a very a pleasant ride. (Mary W.)