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The Boston Globe

Movies

Thoughtful but plodding ‘Hannah Arendt’

Director Margarethe von Trotta.

Known for historical dramatizations such as the moving “The Promise” (1995), about lovers separated by the Berlin Wall, and the wrenching “Marianne and Julianne” (1981), about sisters divided by revolutionary terrorism in 1960s Germany, von Trotta excels at bringing to the big screen lived history and its impact on ordinary lives. But when it comes to major figures, such as in “Rosa Luxemburg” (1986), her film about the socialist firebrand murdered in 1919, her imagination falters.

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