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Frieder Schlaich directs this horrific look at racism in modern Germany. Loosely based on a real-life incident that scandalized Stuttgart in 1989, the film recounts the final day of a Liberian political refugee. Otomo (Isaach de Bankole) cannot find even the most modest of jobs because of his race. Everyone from his fellow boarding house patrons to his fellow churchgoers treat him with contempt and disdain. His long-simmering rage boils over when he finds himself involved in a scuffle with a racist subway ticket collector. Otomo flees the scene after slightly injuring the man, leaving his… More
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 100%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"The film doesn't believe the police deserved to die (or that the ticket inspector should have been assaulted), but then again it doesn't believe a society should so treat a man that this is what he comes to do."
‑ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"You do get a sense of a German society that is still amazingly bureaucratic and authoritarian."
‑ Jonathan Foreman, New York Post
"Although Otomo is clearly intended for German audiences, the film nevertheless raises issues confronted by every Westernized nation."
‑ Maria Garcia, Film Journal International
"I was impressed by the decision to make Otomo a bit of an anti-hero, seeming aware that in desperate times, good people may say or do things outside the norm."
‑ Greg Dean Schmitz, Greg's Previews at Yahoo! Movies
"Much of the sense of size in this account of an immigrant worker, who is only one among many thousands in Germany, comes from the performance by Isaach de Bankole."
‑ Stanley Kauffmann, The New Republic
"A bleak and powerful work, one we probably need more than ever these days."
‑ Elvis Mitchell, New York Times
"Racial profiling is alive and well, not just in real life, but more and more at the movies."
‑ Prairie Miller, WBAI Web Radio
"The messages about racism get a bit ham-handed, but the acting and sense of dread are powerful."
‑ John Anderson, Newsday
"Documents the institutionalized racism and xenophobia that painted one man into a corner, while never excusing the terrible means by which he took his final escape."
‑ Jessica Winter, Village Voice
"A riveting German film about the dehumanized treatment of refugees."
‑ Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat, Spirituality and Practice
More reviews for Otomo on Rotten Tomatoes