DIE KLEINSTE ARMEE DER WELT
Director: Martin Gerner
Documentary | A/D | 2015
82 min | Dolby 5.1
49th Hof International Film Festival
Hamon and Marcus, an Afghan and a German, armed with a Kalashnikov and a turban, take a journey through the Alps as the Bavarian Taliban. The film follows the humorous yet critical art performance of these two cultural guerrillas and their search for better integration in times of thousands of refugees coming to Europe and new Islamophobia. After 20 years without recognition, Hamon fights everyday racism in Germany. Marcus opposes wars – small and large ones – and scrutinizes the wearing of traditional Bavarian Lederhosen. Both turn our reality upside down: the Bavarian Taliban appear as purported aid workers with the aim of civilizing Bavaria. But while Hamon is confronted with the prejudice of being a terrorist, his acting as the Bavarian Taliban encourages him to deal more frankly with the challenges he faces. He looks for traditional rifle clubs and beer-sensitive locations to test the tolerance of Germans and Austrians.
What looks like a comedy turns out to be a conflict: The duo adopt traditional German “homeland” evenings (“Heimatabende”) for their purpose, trying to find out how much tolerance is possible among strangers in nationalist-tainted environments. In doing so, they reflect on German myths of patriotism and homeland. Their encounters with the local Alpine populations mix with the firm desire of the Bavarian Taliban: Hamon and Marcus share the hope to become settled in Germany. Their vision is as ironic as it is real: while Europe calls for a better integration, migrants are at risk.