Running for his life, a young soldier Hans Quangel (Louis Hofmann) finds himself jolting in a bleak and otherwise bare forest somewhere in the battlefields of World War II. Scared, alone and out of breath, the young German soldier seems lost and directionless. As his breaths sharpen and his fear settle, the young soldier spends most of his run with his head looking back; whether it be an enemy, the war itself, or a version of himself he is fearful of becoming, the young Quangel maneuvers himself between the tall and dark trees, the mysteriousness of the forest and the impending and looming death that looks for many young men in the battlefields of war. Before anyone can make any sense of it, we hear a gunshot, fatally wounding the young soldier and forcing him to the ground. As his bright blue eyes begin to turn to grey, life fleeting him quickly and the forest embodying his body, Alone In Berlin begins with what seem like an insignificant death to many, but an impactful one for few.
Loud, proud, and relentless in its portrayal of sport rivals, Ron Howard’s Rush is another entry into his formulaic and conventional directing resume. Like any well oiled machine, Howard is an expert of giving audiences a fundamentally linear narrative with striking and beautiful aesthetic choices, even if the narrative follows the rivalry between two Formula One drivers whose careers and competition is anything but straight-cut.