'Blood Must Flow' - Undercover Among Nazis: Berlin Film Review
The Bottom Line Raw exposé of Germany's neo-Nazi rock-scene loses sight of its targets.
The fact that such activities can continue without attracting police attention is one of Kuban and Ohlendorfer's principal sources of indignation - they show that in urban areas such as Berlin a more pro-active hands-on approach from the cops has paid dividends. "It is crucial to show what is going on here," says Kuban of a topic that "has been brushed under the carpet far too often" as neo-Nazi violence is deprioritized in favor of targeting "international Islamic terrorism" and even extreme-left activism.
The enigmatic Kuban's zeal borders on the obsessional, though his dogged persistence in questioning complacent authority figures - often to their faces - pays dividends. During one such confrontation he comments frustratedly on his own lone-wolf status, dropping in the startling detail that he has "multiple murder charges" against him, a wild assertion which bears no relation to anything that we see or hear elsewhere in the film.
But there are larger, more structural problems here. The second half moves away from Germany, ranging across Europe to Hungary and Italy in a somewhat arbitrary geographical detour that adds little to the picture's overall impact. Kuban's raw material is strong stuff, but Ohlendorfer can't quite find a coherent framework within which to showcase it - there's insufficient editorial distance here between subject and film-maker. Ohlendorfer's attempts at flashy editing flourishes fall repeatedly flat, while there's a counterproductive overuse of a jazz-inflected, horn-heavy score obviously designed to emphasize the tense, thriller-type elements of Kuban's dangerous crusade.
‘Blood Must Flow’ – Undercover Among Nazis: Berlin Film Review
The Bottom Line Raw exposé of Germany’s neo-Nazi rock-scene loses sight of its targets.