Section: Specials



Till Franzen
DE, 2022, 6 Min

This atmospheric and exciting six-part mini-series is set in the Lusatian coalfield, or what remains of it. Cottbus-based LKA investigator Maik Briegand comes from Lauchhammer, where he has to solve the murder of a 17-year-old girl. In the course of the investigation, old companions and family members endanger the officer's neutrality. The front between former miners and young environmentalists also complicates the case, which is making ever greater waves.

In GDR times, the "VEB Braunkohlenwerk Lauchhammer" with its mining, briquette factories and coking plant was one of the most important employers in the Lusatian coalfield. Today, lignite production has largely ceased, and this is causing bitterness among former miners. Maik Briegand is a seasoned investigator working for the LKA in Cottbus. But when he has to solve the murder of a 17-year-old girl in his hometown of Lauchhammer, he encounters people who still know him as "Maiki" from the past: his father, ex-wife, in-laws or a childhood friend who has since been severely traumatized. A real estate speculator from the West senses big business in the area, while on the other hand unemployment, neglect and drug-related crime are rampant. Corrupt or disinterested officials put the brakes on investigations, and young environmentalists clash with the old-established, among them, piquantly, Briegand's daughter Jackie. In the eyes of his colleague Annalena Gottknecht, Briegand has long been biased because of his personal ties to the area. The murder investigation takes ever new twists and turns: they have to do not least with entanglements from the past in a real socialist state, in which crime was officially considered eradicated and the Stasi manipulated explosive cases for the sake of state interests. Imposing images of the huge, barely used industrial facilities, where an oversized overburden conveyor bridge occasionally dredges through the raw material-rich soil, pervade this authentic and brilliantly cast miniseries, skillfully incorporating the Lusatian landscape into the private and criminal intrigues.

This series is broadcast in German.

Text: Kira Taszman

Till Franzen, A.: Silke Zertz / Frauke Hunfeld

Till Franzen -

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