Director: Angelina Maccarone

Germany| 2006. Subtitled. Black and White. Dolby Digital Stereo. 85 min.

The fascination of German cinema with encounters between middle-aged adults and teens takes a new and unexpected turn in director Angelina Maccarone’s new feature Hounded. Here the focus is not on innocent games of sex initiation but the sado-masochistic affair between a fifty-year-old social worker and a 17-year-old teenager under her care. Elsa (Maren Kroymann) seems to live an apparently content life with her cheerful husband until she is charged with the rehabilitation of juvenile delinquent Jan (Kostja Ullmann). The pouting teen likes to be chastised and is determined that he should have Elsa as his ‘dominatrix’. At first she rejects his advances, but eventually she gives in — and does so with a vengeance, initiating meetings and following him around in restless and nervous fashion, demanding his exclusive attention despite the threat to her existence professionally and socially. Shot soberly in black-and-white with a degree of restraint that belies its scandalous topic, Maccarone’s film steers clear of any cheap psychological analysis.

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