(Sabine Hiebler & Gerhard Ertl, Austria, 2001)


The filmmaking team of Sabine Hiebler and Gerhard Ertl emerged from the impressive Austrian avant-garde of the '90s. Their short, compact works combined intensively treated found-footage with rigorously rhythmic collages of music and sound.

As happens with many experimentalists, the transition of Hiebler and Ertl to a narrative feature format is uneasy and a little disappointing. Nonetheless, Nogo manages to be a reasonably colourful and inventive effort.

It adopts a Tarantino-style mosaic (complete with a bank heist) of three sets of characters and their respective stories, all of which eventually converge at a petrol station.

Like a Tom Tykwer film, Nogo – featuring among its ensemble Meret Becker, Oliver Korritke and Jasmin Tabatabai – emphasises the mind games that couples play in closed-space situations, and scrambles chronology for the sake of jazzy overlaps between the tales.

As a result, it tends to freeze regularly for the sake of some cool, Generation-X posturing on the part of the characters, not to mention gestures of ambivalence on the part of the filmmakers – as if they would rather destroy than honour their narrative obligations.

© Adrian Martin September 2002

Film Critic: Adrian Martin
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