Wretchedness, sadness and confrontational grotesquerie once again come together in a movie by Ulrich Seidl, although it’s leavened by something almost – but not quite – like ordinary human compassion. If you’ve seen Seidl’s other movies you’ll know what to expect and you’ll know to steel yourself for horror.
Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian
Freezing winter in a place designed for frolicsome summer can be a doleful time. A case in point: the empty hotels, shuttered waterparks and endless fog banks of the Italian beach town that gives Ulrich Seidl’s challenging but riveting Berlin competition film its name. Along with the hazy gray shoreline and lonely iced-over thoroughfares, they’re the visual markers of a low season in which the “low” refers as much to mood as occupancy rates, though for the city’s tourist industry, it’s a gloom that will lift with the coming of spring. — The brilliantly named Richie Bravo (Austrian actor Michael Thomas giving such an astoundingly deep-dive performance it barely feels like performance at all) is a washed-up singer whose own high season is long behind him.
Jessica Kiang, Variety