THE HOLY BUNCH (Der Zynische Körper) Heinz Emigholz, D 1986-90, 89 min
I don't want to become a vegetable
Five people leaf through the notebooks of the deceased editor Roy, who had been their mutual friend, and thereby construct their collective past: the writer Carl; the photographer Liza, with whom he lives; the architect Jon, for whom Liza takes pictures; the comic-artist Fred, with whom Carl runs through scenes for his novel; and the translater Bela who collects Freudian slips.
Carl is having trouble writing. As the film progresses, his novelistic character Rob develops into a real person who intervenes in his life with increasing menace. Roy supports his author but is marked by a severe illness. To escape his difficulties, Carl accompanies Jon and Liza on an architectural journey. Bela and Fred remain behind with Roy and are confronted with his approaching death.
The action in Heinz Emigholz’s complex, fantastic, funny and absorbing painter-writer-philosophy-sex film, THE HOLY BUNCH, takes place in Hamburg, on the Cologne Cathedral and outside Gaudí’s La Sagrada Familia, on earth and in heaven. It deals with the relationship between buildings and bodies and landscapes, between philosophical texts and Daliah Lavi hits such as If you could read my mind. It is about writing and collecting, about love between bisexuals, straights and gays, and about death. This is funny, and then more and more tragic. (KÖLNER STADTANZEIGER, Hans Schifferle)
Emigholz has now been occupied for some years – and with great consistency – with the development of a new, personal form of film narrative. (BERLINALE JOURNAL, Ulrich Gregor)
Awards and Festivals
- Berlinale 1991, Internationales Forum des Jungen Films (Premiere)
- San Sebastian 1991
- Viennale 2001
- Bafici Buenos Aires 2004