Germany, 2007
15 minutes
Super 16mm

Film Academy Baden-Württemberg

A Martin Busker Film
A Kathrin Tabler Production

Written and directed by Martin Busker
Producer: Kathrin Tabler,
Paul Mattis aka Matthias Schmidt
Image design: Maximilian Hoever
Editing: Julia Böhm,
Wiebke Hofmann
Production Design: Jan Jericho
Sound: Benjamin Christ
Music: Patrizio Deidda,
Moritz Schmittat
Casting: Kathrin Tabler
Make-up design: Sarah Pöck
Costume design: Deborah Nannt,
Rebecca Eble, Marcelina Kyziol

Tommaso Cacciapuoti (Ralph)
Ferdinand Hanisch (Felix)
Johanna Niedermüller (Mother)
Bettina Ernst (Bettina)

Filmschau Baden-Württemberg 2008
(1. Preis, Förderpreis der Baden-Württembergischen Filmindustrie)

Gay and Lesbian Film Days Hamburg 2007
(1st prize section "Made in Germany")

Awarded the rating "Wertvoll 2008
Film Rating Office Wiesbaden

Short Film of the Month February 2008
Film Rating Office Wiesbaden


The film is about the football coach Ralph (33), who is faced with perhaps the most difficult decision of his life on this day. Torn between reason and desire, he has fallen in love with a 15-year-old boy from his team. He has been in a relationship with Felix for several months now, which he tries to keep secret with the greatest of care, but this is not so easy, as Felix often provokes him. Ralph's bubble is burst when Felix's mother suddenly appears in their secret hideout and confronts him with a letter she found. She puts a gun to Ralph's head. If he approaches the boy even once more, she will call the police and make sure he is punished. Ralf has to choose between his feelings and his reason.

With the story on "HerzHaft" I took a perspective that deeply divided the audience. Instead of telling the abuse of charges from the point of view of the "victims", I force the audience to emotionally engage with the "perpetrator". His inner conflict and his attempt to reconcile his feelings with the supposedly right behaviour create a sympathy that is provocative. The film also tells the story of a gay boy whose sexuality is not recognised by his mother and whose feelings must also be subordinated to reason. In the end, "HerzHaft" leaves behind three protagonists who are lonely and the difficult question of how the viewer would have behaved.

"HerzHaft" was screened at more than 50 film festivals in 15 countries after its premiere at the Max Ophüls Prize festival in 2007. It won 1st prize at the lesbian gay film festival Hamburg 2007 as well as the Förderpreis der baden-württembergischen Filmindustrie. It was awarded the rating "Wertvoll" and has been released on DVD by Edition Salzgeber.

Set photos
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