Free State Midpoint

a film by Kai Ehlers

Free State Midpoint
79 min | HD | Color | DCP | 5.1. | German with English Subtitles

"The film has shaken me deeply. It is impossible not to get drawn into it. Because what is told to us is not delivered by commentary, but in the voices of the victimised. I feel a responsibility and I am ashamed of the justice system, which, even after 1945, shamelessly continued to exercise the Nazi-Justice (Hereditary Health Law) in the Federal Republic of Germany - until 1991.

I find the visual form ingenious. It doesn’t illustrate the horrible events as files, law texts and self-righteous commentators. On the contrary, it shows us open bucolic meadows, fields, pastures, and woods in which the affected people lived. Far away from the self-righteous functionaries in their offices.
This film stands in direct contrast to the dry, scientific, research-based contemporary documentation of the past. It is vivid and aims at something known to us all: Humanity and the Human Spirit.

Everyone should see this film.

Dietrich Kuhlbrodt
Free State Midpoint reports from a chapter of the Nazi regime - eugenics - that has not been covered extensively from a subjective perspective due to a lack of eloquent witnesses and a forum for their few voices.

But Ernst Otto Karl Grassmé bore witness to what has been done to him and what he wished for: In many letters to a teenage girl from the neighbourhood - which he might have perceived as the child he was denied - he reports from his suffering which continued in post-war Germany when he was refused reparation. And sometimes even humorously he describes his struggle for a life in dignity: In the woods - apart from the society that had tried to take it away from him.

The film offers a unique subjective perspective on the cruel pratice of eugenics and its long lasting effects. It renews the question what that actually looks like: a sovereign life.
a Kai Ehlers Film Production in Coproduction with Moon Jar Film

funded by Film Workshop Kiel of the Film Fund Hamburg Schleswig-Holstein, supported by a Crowdfunding, the Arthur Boskamp Foundation, the Ameos Hospital Society and the Postfactory