Run Lola Run

In Tom Tykwer’s 1998 Crime/Drama film, “Run Lola Run,” it almost seems as if Lola literally never stops running. When she gets a call from her freaked out criminal boyfriend explaining that he is in desperate need of her help after he forgets a 100,000 mark payment from a delivery he made, and is given twenty minutes to come up with the money.

It is very sweet to see the measures that Lola is willing to take to protect her boyfriend and keep him out of harms way. From bank robberies to sucking up her pride to ask her father for help, it is clear that she cares for her boyfriend Manni very deeply.

One unusual quality about this film is that it almost seems like it will never end, as the same event keeps reoccurring, but with different choices being made on Lola’s part, resulting in a different ending each time. Time seems to reset every time things end badly, and she gets another chance to do things over until she makes the right decisions and gets the right outcome.

One thing I noticed though is every time Lola interacted with a certain person and then kept running, the camera would focus on the person and then show a montage of scenes as if showing the future of the person with how their life will turn out. This technique reflects foreshadowing and a butterfly/domino effect of how decisions in the present can make a huge difference on how things turn out in the future, which I thought was a good message. There was also an excellent use of split screen to show all of the events taking place simultaneously.

On a totally unrelated note, Lola seemed to have this habit of screaming loud enough and at the right pitch to break glass every time something stressed her out or become extremely difficult. I thought that habit was super hilarious because it is an action that everyone wants to do at some point in their life but can’t or doesn’t so it reflected the inner feelings of a very stressed out/overwhelmed individual. As annoying as it was, I could not stop laughing every time she did it.

All in all, I have to say that watching this film was a tad stressful because it is almost like she is playing a game over and over again until she beats it and you are following along on her difficult journey. You can’t help but wonder how many times things will reset, what things she will do differently, and what will be considered her “ideal” ending to get out of the loop she is trapped in.

 

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3 thoughts on “Run Lola Run

  1. I definitely felt stressed out as I watch this as well. It was so up beat and I didn’t think it would ever end well. I think my favorite part of the film was the “butterfly effects” that you touched on. That was very interesting for me to see and how something very small can literally change the rest of a life. People were literally going from happy, fulfilling lives to dying two weeks later just from her timing of running by them.

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  2. This was probably the most stressful movie I have watched in my life. It felt like I was watching a video game and I couldn’t actually “play” it. Every time the clock rewinded I felt, “yes! She can change it!”
    It was reminiscent of video games to me because it only rewinded every time she or Manni died. Which is kind of like Mario, where every time you die you have a chance to start over and make different choices. It’s also the only way I could cope with her screeching scream, I thought about it like a skip button you would use if one level is too difficult.
    The whole character snapshot thing threw me off, but it was fun to try to put different puzzle pieces together.

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  3. I find it funny that you thought Lola’s screaming was hilarious I actually found it quiet uncomfortable and awkward. However, I think it fit well with the film’s narrative. I personally found this film to be very stressful and at times boring, I just wanted to know what happened in this next scenario, but the film had to go through the whole entire marigamaroll until we got through the end. It’s the filmmakers all had a different idea for this film and how they wanted it to end so they incorporated all the ends into the film and thus made Run Lola Run. Although this film is tense I really appreciate its weirdness and feeling of groundhogs day. Also I though it was a really good touch when they are in bed and talking about scenarios that relate to what happened. I think that in some ways represents the idea of coincidences being “something written in the starts,” the idea that there are no coincidences. Great post!

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