Good Life Deal
“Goodbye forever,” he says as he leaves the apartment. Gerhard is an early retiree; a mysterious illness affects his mobility. He sells his apartment in Vienna and moves to Chiang Mai to be with his girlfriend Amy, a taxi driver. He lives there with her and her family, with the money left from his liquidated Austrian existence intended to finance a house. Amy opens a silverware shop. Maybe the doctors in Thailand will find a way to heal Gerhard. A Good Life, Act Two. This could be the deal.
Samira Ghahremani’s precise, never insistent observation maps a globalized relationship interwoven with precarious exchange relationships. Images capture the material and immaterial circulations: The Austrian apartment and the house in Thailand. Gerhard’s gifts, and Amy’s gestures of affection. Gerhard’s fluctuating vitality and Amy’s bustling activity.
Gerhard notices a change in economic relations after he buys a Mercedes for Amy: from then on she seems elusive. It is only when a visitor from Austria arrives that he investigates the payments intended for buying a house; this brings unpleasant discoveries. When Gerhard, brought back to earth by the hard facts of the matter, talks to a child about what the moon is like, it seems to be an echo of an earlier playful dispute with Amy about whether a man or a rabbit lives inside it. But this time, the dreamy register has been lost.
“There are many truths,” Gerhard says at one point at the beginning, when his and Amy’s story about the history of their relationship doesn’t quite line up. GOOD LIFE DEAL portrays his version, leaving a gap – which is no small documentary feat – in the knowledge that there are others. (Sebastian Markt)
Translation: John Wojtowicz
Gerhard is physically handicapped and dependent on care. Nevertheless, he wants to leave and chooses Thailand. He wants to build a future with Amy, his new Thai girlfriend. Their relationship is accompanied by an unspoken agreement: financial support in exchange for a family idyll. But Amy cheats him out of most of his financial assets. With the help of two friends, he tries to rearrange his life because Amy has gone into hiding and with her the dream of a good life. (production note)
Good Life Deal
german, English, thai