Blog | Theatre

Rene Pollesch: L'Affaire Martin! Etc.

. 1 min read

In L'Affaire Martin! Occupe-toi de Sophie! Par la fenêtre, Caroline! Le mariage de Spengler. Christine est en avance, or L'Affaire Martin! Etc. for short, René Pollesch has turned the language of postmodern philosophy into the stuff of comedy. In L'Affaire Martin! Etc. members of the Silesian family Von der Donnersmarck want to make a film about the Lives of Others. But who are the Others? The Von der Donnersmarck family just don’t seem to be able to pin them down. And why has the entire population of Tanzania vanished in the mist in the work of Jane Goodall? And what does this have to do with the Von der Donnersmarck family and the Tour de France? And why did I go to see this performance? And why am I writing this? Is this the best use of my time?

Some people may find L'Affaire Martin! Etc. pretentious. It helps if you've seen Das Leben der Anderen (The Lives of Others) and it helps if you remember that it was directed by Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck. It also helps if you know that Silesia is a former state in Central Europe and it certainly helps if you are familiar with the preoccupation with the Other in postmodern philosophy.

René Pollesch uses the work of Donna Harraway and other contemporary philosophers and sociologists to say something about the world we live in, the nature of theatre and the expectations of the audience who come to see a theatre performance. Unwittingly, he also exposes what is so funny about postmodern philosophy and cultural theory.

My review of Rene Pollesch: Pablo in der Plusfiliale.