Happy End is the debut film by German writer and director Petra Clever, known for her popular lesbian short Mermaids. It takes a look at the struggle between being true to yourself and placating those around you while also discussing the importance of giving dignity in death by honoring who someone truly was in life.
The film stars Sinha Melina Gierke as Lucca, a shy but confident aspiring law student and Verena Wustkamp as Val, an older emotionally unavailable woman that also happens to be the resident singer at the local lesbian bar.
The two meet when Lucca finds herself in a misunderstanding with the law and is given 20 hours of community service at the local hospice center where Val works. They have an instant connection that Lucca seems desperate to explore and Val seems to enjoy encouraging, while still keeping her distance.
Their lives become entwined after the passing of Herma, a resident that has become more like a family member to Val. While Herma’s son has his own plans for her quick, cheap burial and his own personal inheritance, Val, knowing those were not Herma’s last wishes, decides to take matters into her own hands. The two set off to reclaim Herma’s ashes and deliver her to the resting place she deserves.
On this trip, Val finds a true freedom in standing up for her loved one’s beliefs and Lucca finally stands up to her overprotective father, a single dad who has her whole life plan already laid out for her (and who seems like her incredibly overbearing husband for the first 20 minutes of the movie).
Happy End gives the viewer the satisfaction of a lesbian storyline while also creating a broader message outside of the main characters. The result is a well-written, heartfelt film that already has the feeling of a classic lesbian movie.
Happy End is a Sistas Inspiration production and is available on iTunes and through Wolfe Video.