Phillip lives with his mother and his eight-year-old sister in middle-class conditions. The film begins when he returns home after a week in which he disappeared without a trace. The mother and his teachers can only guess what he was looking for, being at the mercy of nature or an approach to death, triggered by the death of his father. The first weeks after his return are narrated, in which the normality of daily life, which stumbles back into action, stands in stark contrast to the proximity of death to which Phillip has gone. His mother fails at the necessity of accepting that her son is leading a life of his own which she can only influence to a limited extent. After she believed that she at least no longer had to worry about his physical integrity, Phillip goes to the hospital with blood poisoning. The mother loses her nerves between renewed concern for the child, fears of failure and feelings of guilt. But the children do not turn away. The structure of the family disintegrates in order to form itself anew.
ANGELA SCHANELEC was born in 1962. She studied Acting at the College of Music and Performing Arts in Frankfurt am Main from 1982-1984, and worked at the Thalia Theater in Hamburg, Berlin’s Schaubühne and the Schauspielhaus in Bochum from 1984-1991. She studied at the German Film & Television Academy in Berlin from 1990-1995, graduating with MY SISTER’S GOOD FORTUNE, winner of the German Critics’ Prize 1996. Her other films include: SCHÖNE GELBE FARBE (1991), WEIT ENTFERNT (1991), PRAG, MÄRZ 92 (1992), I STAYED IN BERLIN ALL SUMMER (1993), PLACES IN CITIES (1998, Cannes Un Certain Regard), PASSING SUMMER (2001, Berlinale Forum), MARSEILLE (2004, Cannes Un Certain Regard 2005), AFTERNOON (2007), ORLY (2010, Berlinale Forum), THE BRIDGES OF SARAJEVO: PRINCIP TEXTE (2014, Cannes Special Screenings), THE DREAMED PATH (2016, Locarno In Competition), and I WAS AT HOME, BUT... (2019, Berlinale In Competition).