I like feel-good comedies and I'm a distance-runner myself, so when I heard about this film I was already sold: Ageing ex-marathon star Paule Averhoff goes for one last race, and no less than the Berlin marathon too (ok, the story plays in Berlin, so that's the most obvious goal).
Knowing Hallervorden as a comedian with the not-so-subtle approach, I thought this would turn out more on the comedy side, but I was completely wrong: This is a thoughtful, very quiet and touching story, with intense emotions and not that many laughs (but those well-earned). The scenes in the geriatric ward - complete with a musical protestant nazi nurse a bit prettier than Ratched - are claustrophobic and intense; every scene out of it felt like a relief. Dieter Hallervorden and Tatja Seibt as his wife show captivating performances; the only weaker parts of the film are those where we cut away to their daughter, played by Heike Makatsch - it's not her fault, it's just that it's not really her story and we would rather stay with Paule.
The final race scenes (the story itself goes on a wee bit longer) left me a bit nonplussed; I didn't get why he entered the stadium all alone
hardly fitting for the event and I don't think it would have taken
away from the impact if there were some other runners by his side as during the previous kilometers. But overall, one of the best 2013 films! Highly recommended!