A Jewish woman feared dead returns home from a Nazi death camp, shot in the face and deformed, and receives totally facial reconstructive surgery. When she chances upon her treacherous ex-husband, not realizing he's looking upon the real thing, he schemes to dress her up and train her as his wife in order to claim the sizable inheritance. In a riff of sorts on Vertigo, Christian Petzold's Phoenix is another engrossing, low-key, slowly unfolding historical fiction, shot with a saturated color palette and featuring an outstanding performance from Hoss, here offering a completely different turn from that of her work I am familiar with. The film is brilliantly paced, reaffirming the art of the 90 minute movie, and the ending is remarkable.
*** 1/2 out of ****