Returning to the German countryside where she was born and raised, German Filipino filmmaker Christina Stuhlberger constructs a poignant family portrait centered on Ludwig, a teenager growing up in rural Bavaria, considered as the economic powerhouse of Germany. Ludwig lives on an old farm with his eccentric grandmother, surrounded by her colony of cats. His father is a regular visitor to the farm, committed to raising his son and sharing his worldview with him.
On their doorstep passes Autobahn 3, a freeway that connects this region to Eastern Europe and beyond. The film touches on Ludwig’s coming-of-age and his gradual enthrallment with political rhetoric. As the memories of the past that shaped contemporary Europe fade, his adolescent world is increasingly visited by the spectres of German history. The film is not only concerned with the interlacing of past and present, but also with the connection between personal and political time. It gradually uncovers how history haunts our daily lives, makes itself felt in words and gestures, even in the act of retreating into one’s own universe, one’s own mythology. How history finds ways to ventriloquize our existence and our relationship with the outside world.
Ludwig portrays three generations living in Bavaria in the south-eastern corner of Germany: mother Betty, son Gunter and grandson Ludwig. In 2015, more than 300,000 migrants arrived in the area and the family members reacted very differently to this. In the past, Betty had been married briefly to the filmmaker's father, but Christina Stuhlberger had never met them until recently. With this personal project she wants to explore how people with very different views on the world can have a meaningful exchange.