A German movie from 1998. Written and directed by Tom Tykwer. Players: Franka Potente, Moritz Bleibtreu, Herbert Knaup, Nina Petri, and others.

Lola and her boyfriend, Manni, are couriers in a drug deal. Manni made the exchange and had the money, 100,000 Deutsche Marks. Lola was supposed to pick him up but didn't make it on time. While making his way back the money is stolen from him. Now Lola has 20 minutes to get to Manni and find 100,000 Deutsche Marks. It actually goes through the story several times showing different possibilities of what could happen.

It took me a bit to get used to the subtitles since I don't speak German. After that I really enjoyed the movie. To me the movie is about showing what a difference a few seconds can make. I thought the animated clips were a little cheesy. I think they should have done something with them that they couldn't do or show in live action like a visualization of Lola's emotions. Other than that I thought the writting and directing were pretty good. I definitely recommend the movie. I'll give it 3.5 out of 4.

Run Lola Run is very much a Mage the Ascension movie. Both she and her boyfriend demonstrate advanced mastery of Time magic, seeing as they both take steps back in time in each of the two less-than-happy endings when one of the two bites the bullet. Lola herself focuses her magic by screaming, and demonstrates significant power in the sphere of Entropy when she hits the same number twice in a game of roulette, and at least Disciple status in the Life sphere by healing a friend of her father's in an ambulance.

It's possible that the security guard at the bank is also a mage, because not only does he know the Rules, he seems to have a greater understanding of what's going on behind the scenes.

I would take a different perspective on the magic that Lola and her boyfriend use across the three stories. I would liken it much more to chaos manipulation and lateral thinking. Basically Lola is working through the random events of life in order to find the optimal path. This procedure is commonly used in decision making algorithms in the field of artificial intelligence. However, as this movie shows, a very acute understanding of the movement of time and nature is important in order to manipulate it.

An extremely fast paced movie about a German girl who must find a way to get 100,000 Deutche Marks in 20 minutes or else some drug dealers will kill her boyfriend. Three scenarios, all really cool, of how she does this. Kind of like a techno version of Sliding Doors.

The most noteworthy aspect of this movie is not the plot, but rather the style in which it is shot. The movie combines regular film, digital video, still photography, and animation all into one movie. Combined with a high paced and energizing soundtrack, this movie is one of the most memorable movies to be seen today.

The digital video aspect of the movie is significant. Whenever there is a scene where Manny or Lola is not present, it is in DV. The quality difference between normal film and DV is very noticable. This technique shows the bond between Manny and Lola, for when they are not there, the rest of the world is not clear or realistic. When either Manny or Lola enter or are in the scene, it immediately cuts to normal film, to show the reality of her world.

The use of still photography is very innovative. There are several insignificant and minor characters who are shown in the movie, but their entire future is revealed to the audience in a matter of seconds by a quick sequence of still photographs. The animation is used at the beginning of each segment, showing and stressing the crazy and surreal world of Lola.

All in all, an extremely memorable film. Extremely original and worth seeing more than once. In addition, here are some facts about the movie that people may not have known or missed:

-The blind woman who gives Manny a phonecard, and later directs him towards the man who originally took his money is in actuality the actor's mother. Moritz Blibtreau and his mother are both well known movie stars in Germany.

-The scene where the ambulance shatters the huge pane of glass is shot by having a small piece of dynamite detonate and shatter the glass before the vehicle hits it. This is noticable if you watch the bottom of the pane in that scene. There is a little flash before the glass shatters.

-The woman chanting in the soundtrack of 'I Wish' is actually Franka Potente, the actress who plays Lola.

-In the accident scene, where Lola's father and Herr Meyer crash into the muscleheads and hit a guy on a mo-ped, the guy on the mo-ped who gets hit is the same guy who stole Lola's mo-ped at the beginning.

Tom Tykwer’s 1998 film Run Lola Run (or Lola Rennt) is a frenetic action movie that heavily borrows its cinematic style not only from American music videos and Japanese anime films, but especially from video games. In the film, Lola’s boyfriend Manni is a bagman for a local gangster, but he has lost the money he was supposed to deliver. This leads Lola on a desperate chase to find the money and deliver it to Manni before he is killed. The abilities that Lola manifests as she runs through the streets establish her not only as a devoted girlfriend, but also as a modern superhero. The film also acts as a play on the ideas of the immutability of time and what is known as “the butterfly effect”.

In one of the first shots of the film, Manni desperately calls Lola from a pay phone while a whirling white spiral spins on the building behind him. Throughout the conversation the spiral spins and spins, never stopping, its constant motion immediately draws the eyes of the viewer. In the following shot, a clock mounted on another building replaces the spiral. Just like the spiral is always rotating, so are the hands on a clock, but the inexorable moving of the hands signifies something important to us that we cannot stop. But the spiral also represents how time runs for Lola in the film. Lola has the ability to escape linear time and is able to repeat the events of her run multiple times until she reaches her goal.

The ability to escape linear time is one of the powers that paint Lola as a video game hero. This association begins with her wardrobe. The streets of urban Germany are portrayed as being drab and filled with people dressed in dark colors, making Lola’s blue tank top and flaming red hair (a common anime characteristic) into an outlandish superhero ensemble. Lola’s main powers are her ability to run without getting tired and her super scream (another anime characteristic and also a reference to The Tin Drum). Lola can use her scream to break objects and to influence the roulette wheel at the end of the film. Lola is also able to use her gaze to influence others. Her stare forces the security guard at the casino to back down, and glare from Lola also seemingly gives the bank guard a heart attack, which she later heals through her touch. The mere act of being in the presence of Lola can influence the fate of others. As she passes people on the street during her run, there are quick snapshots of how these people’s lives turned out depending on their interaction with Lola.

All of these characterizations make Lola into a creature of boundless energy, and this is echoed in the camerawork used to portray her. As Lola runs through the streets, the camera is often placed in a set position covering the scene, which requires that it must move in order follow Lola through the shot. Her speed makes the camera move. In the wider shots, such as from the top of a building, Lola is the only thing moving with such velocity through the frame, which only seems to intensify her speed. Tykwer fills the movie with other types of inventive camera work that grabs viewer’s attention, such as the mixing of different film types, use of animation, and the usage of split-screen (especially an excellent triple screen before Lola and Manni rob the supermarket.)

The music used in the film also acts as a repository for this energy. It is all pulse-pounding dance music that pushes Lola along on her quest, often scaling up or down in speed depending on where she is. This type of music has a lack of a defined beginning and end patterns, allowing it to be played repetitively and looping back on itself, much like the loop of time that Lola has been placed in. The songs on the soundtrack almost act like an internal monologue for Lola, especially “I Wish.” This song, sung by Franka Potente (Lola herself), is about her struggling against where she has been placed and wishing she could live the life she wanted to.

All of this put together makes Lola into a kind of reluctant video game hero, only instead of being controlled by a kid with a gamepad she is controlling herself. Lola has reached the “Save Manni” stage in the game of her life and she must wade through it several times before she can find a way to beat the level. Each time she runs through the level she learns something new about how to beat it, such as when Manni teaches her how to take the safety off a gun and she remembers how to do that in her later runs. The placement of the camera also lends itself to thinking of the city as a game level. Lola rarely beats the camera to wherever she is going next, usually the camera is there first and she then enters into the frame, it is like everything has already been set-up in the level and she must work her way through it. Even though Lola is living in circular time, the world she is trapped in is made to seem linear with each area coming in a specific order and the Non-player characters (everyone except Lola) going about their lives in a set way until they are required to come into contact with Lola.

Lola is a being filled with so much energy that it permeates the film. She must use to this energy to navigate the world she lives in, and even though she may fail on her mission she users her powers to continue until she finds the correct way to reach the end, whether it be a castle with a princess inside or just a happy ending running off with Manni.

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