That Trip We Took With Dad
Die Reise mit Vater
Panorama | Contemporary World Cinema
1968: the times they are a changin’, with unrest building around the world, including in Eastern Europe. This family comedy features the Reinholtz household: father William (Ovidiu Schumacher) and sons Mihai (Alexandru Margineanu) and Emil (Razvan Enciu). They’re of German origin, living in Romania, but when a sick William needs surgery the trio must head off to Germany for the operation. Things go haywire when they hit Czechoslovakia; it’s the Prague Spring period, and Soviet tanks have just started to roll in looking to crush the subversive movement…
The humour here is sharp and wide-ranging, and the look at politics is refreshingly complex, with the contradictions and confusions of life in the Eastern Bloc laid bare. Though it addresses state repression and rank injustice, the movie is the opposite of preachy: it’s a political work that hits its targets but doesn’t bludgeon them. The film is firmly grounded in the period of its setting, but its observations register potently today: Communism may be dead, but folly—individual and institutional—will be with us forever.
"[A] warm and engaging family dramedy… deserves every one of its 111 minutes."—Amber Wilkinson, Eye For Film