Directed by: David Wnendt
Starring: Alina Levshin (Marisa), Jella Haase (Svenja ), Sayed Ahmad Wasil Mrowat (Rasul), Gerdy Zint (Sandro), Rosa Enskat ((Marisa’s mother)
Country: Germany; Effed Up European Cinema
Language: German (Eng Subs); Effed Up German Movies
Genres: Neo-Nazis, Racism
Plot – Spoilers:
A German girl, Marisa, works at her family’s grocery store. She’s hostile to everybody except her mother who is distant and merely tolerant of her. Marisa’s rage finds a home in a local Neo-Nazi group whose leader she’s dating and they often entertain themselves by attacking anyone who looks foreign to their lives.
Marisa encounters two Afghan refugees a couple of times, one of whom pisses her off even more for his quiet defiance. It all snowballs into a moment of blind fury and she begins to experience contradictory emotions. Meanwhile, there’s the parallel track of a relatively more stable teenager Svenja, who starts hanging out with the Nazis and is drawn to Marisa’s overpowering charm.
Combat Girls is mostly focused on the Neo-Nazi aspect of Marisa’s life, and while the relationship with her mother is detailed in flickers, it’s possibly the one thing that glows the brightest here. The source of Marisa’s kinship with a Nazi worldview, her grandfather, might also have been indirectly responsible for all her rage – the simmering iciness of her mother probably had roots in his brutal treatment of her for getting pregnant young and then later doting on the kid once it was finally born.
Combat Girls stumbles a bit into the trope of the pitfalls of holding extreme views, but is mostly fair in its sympathy for all its characters.