Coup de Grâce

Director: Volker Schlöndorff
Year Released: 1976
Rating: 1.5

A non-descript woman (Margarethe von Trotta) falls for a soldier during World War I, but he doesn't return her affections - to 'get even,' she starts sleeping around. The banality of it all becomes clear later on: he rebuffs her not out of basic disinterest, but because he's actually a homosexual (which apparently led to his violence the same way an earlier rape had an influence on her promiscuity) and the title 'final blow' comes when she impulsively 'switches sides,' gets captured by her former comrades and is killed by the soldier (oh, sweet cheap irony!). It's flimsy as both war film and psychological drama - although historically, Schlöndorff hasn't exactly been the most complex of directors.