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How ‘In the Fade’ Explores Terrorism, Democracy, Revenge, and Justice

"The theme of revenge is very cinematic."

In the Fade

, the new film by Fatih Akin, is divided into three parts,”

explains A.O. Scott

. “The first two follow a pattern that will be familiar to

Law & Order

fans. A crime is investigated, and then a trial conducted, with a few twists and reversals on the way to the verdict. The emphasis, though, falls less on the procedural aspects of the case than its psychological effects, specifically on Katja Sekerci (Diane Kruger), a German woman whose husband and young son are killed in a bombing in Hamburg.” To read the full article,

click here


“I was inspired by the NSU murders in 2011,” Akin recalls. “The German Neo-Nazi group National Socialist Underground (National- sozialistischer Untergrund) perpetrated a series of xenophobe murders between 2000 and 2007 throughout Germany. It was shocking for me as I’m of Turkish background. My brother was acquainted with someone who was killed from Hamburg.

“The big scandal was that the police focused their investigation on people within the community of the victims, blaming drug or gambling connections,” the director continues. “Police pressure was so intense that even the press and the community themselves began to have similar suspicions. I started researching the concept of revenge. Does it really exist? Who would actually seek vengeance? Would I take revenge?

“Katja has her own morality, her own definition of justice. In that way, Katja embodies something dormant inside of us that should always remain dormant. I was not interested in the murderers’ perspectives. I was very clear about where my empathy, my focus, had to be. In the Fade became a very personal film for me. Although she’s a blond and blue-eyed German woman, the character of Katja is my alter ego. This film is about that universal feeling of grief and its many layers.”

“The theme of revenge is very cinematic,” Akin tells Amir Ganjavie. “Every second film is about revenge. It’s a very old, emotional need in human beings, going back to the Bible—Cain and Abel, ‘an eye for an eye’ kind of thing—so it is deep within us. I’m not for the death penalty. I’m a filmmaker; I made a film about revenge. The more personally involved I am with a film the less I get bored when I’m doing it. The politics in this film is exchangeable, but I chose this one because it’s personal, because I could be a victim of such radical, extreme groups.” To read the full interview, click here.

“I’ll tell you something, I had the very first idea that I’m going to write something about neo-Nazis or about racism as a film when I was like 19 or 20, back in ’92 when the two Germanys came together,” Akin tells Stephen Saito.  “We had this rise of neo-Nazis in Germany and a lot of killings of Turkish immigrants. That was where it was very relevant for me, and it never left me alone, that feeling. Now the film comes out and everybody tells me how relevant it is, but I tell you, the world always was like this.” To read the full interview, click here.

The Vigilant Thriller In the Fade Melds Tragedy With Nihilism

“The film arrives at a time when anti-immigrant movements are flourishing around the world,” Bilal Qureshi explains, “but the anger Fatih Akin feels about what’s going on in Germany doesn’t mean he’s lost hope. Akin says, where there’s darkness, there’s light, and In the Fade is his contribution—a personal story about finding a way out of the darkness and out of the fade.” To read the full story, click here.

In the Fade Is a Tale of Grief and Violence in Modern Germany

Germany’s In the Fade Flips the Script on the Terrorism Film

“Melancholy and Aggression:” In the Fade Examines Democracy’s Limitations and Human Capacity for Revenge

Interview: Fatih Akin on Getting Under the Skin with In the Fade