Stuttgart-born actress Nina Hoss could easily be filed under German actors you didn’t know you already know. Fans of the hit political television drama Homeland may recognize her. Hoss appeared in several episodes in seasons 4 and 5 as Astrid, a German embassy worker and Peter Quinn’s former flame. Or perhaps you may know her from the big screen in last year’s A Most Wanted Man where she worked alongside Philip Seymour Hoffman, Rachel McAdams, Robin Wright and fellow German Daniel Brühl. But her talents are not merely limited to acting. Hoss collaborated in 2014 with the alternative rock band Manic Street Preachers on their track “Europa geht durch mich” off their album Futurology.
But this month we’re getting to know Nina Hoss and practicing German language with her films. I’m highlighting three of Hoss’ films: A Girl Called Rosemarie (Das Mädchen Rosemarie), The Elementary Particles (Elementarteilchen), and Jerichow!
A Girl Called Rosemarie (Das Mädchen Rosemarie)
Bernd Eichinger was a famed producer who, before his death in 2011, worked on big American films like Resident Evil and Fantastic Four as well as large German films like Downfall and The Baader Meinhof Complex. He also has got several directing credits to his name including the 1996 made for German television film A Girl Called Rosemarie (Das Mädchen Rosemarie). In the film, based rather loosely on actual people and events, Hoss stars as the title character. Set in 1950s Germany, Rosemarie is willing to do whatever it takes to succeed and live a luxurious lifestyle, even if that means prostitution. When she’s found dead, there is no shortage of potential suspects in her former lovers.
The Elementary Particles (Elementarteilchen)
With an all-star cast — Moritz Bleibtreu, Christian Ulmen, Martina Gedeck, Franka Potente, and Hoss — The Elementary Particles is based on Michel Houellebecq’s book Les Particules élémentaires and is also directed by Oskar Roehler. The film focuses on two half-brothers that couldn’t be more different. One is a nerdy, socially awkward molecular biologist (Ulmen) and the other has a sex addiction (Bleibtreu). Life changes for both brothers when they connect with special women (Potente and Gedeck). It’s a heavy, graphic film that may not be for all viewers. Hoss portrays the brothers’ mother. She appears in flashbacks to their difficult childhoods.
This film is based partially on the James M. Cain novel The Postman Always Rings Twice. Jerichow follows Benno Fürmann as Thomas, an Afghan War veteran who is a bit of a loner and a man of not many words. While back home for his mother’s funeral, he settles down in the quiet town. Shortly thereafter he meets Ali, the owner of a chain of snack bars. Ali is currently without a driver’s license due to some alcohol-related offenses. Thomas quickly becomes Ali’s driver and, thereafter, begins an affair with Ali’s wife, Laura (portrayed by Hoss). They’re playing with a dangerous secret, especially considering that Ali’s not shy about abusing his wife.
Practice practice practice! Discover other great German language actors and actresses previously featured.