Recommended by Nick Carver – Marketing Manager

  • Germany: 1998
  • Cert: PG / 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Director: Tom Tykwer

Written and directed by Tom Tykwer, ‘Run Lola Run’ is an incredibly fast-paced thriller, packing three versions of the same story into its compact running time.

While taking a train to make a huge money drop to his gangster employees, Manni panics at the sight of ticket inspectors, jumps the train, and accidentally leaves the cash behind. Manni is meeting his boss in 20 minutes and will be killed if he doesn’t have the money, so he calls his girlfriend, Lola, for help. Lola, desperate to help her lover, leaves her apartment and begins running through the streets of Berlin on a 20 minute quest to save Manni’s life.

We see three versions of Lola’s journey, each affected by a unique split-second interaction, culminating in three significantly different endings. The film touches on themes such as free will vs. determinism, the role of chance in people’s destiny, and obscure cause-effect relationships. Through brief flash-forward sequences of still images, Lola’s fleeting interactions with bystanders are revealed to have surprising and drastic effects on their future lives, serving as concise illustrations of chaos theory’s butterfly effect, in which minor, seemingly inconsequential variations in any interaction can blossom into much wider results than is often recognised.