The best thing that can happen to an actor on German television is not dying a nice death in "Tatort" or using Lars Eidinger's toothbrush for once.

The best thing is to fall into the hands of Jan Georg Schütte, who is not only a director and screenwriter, but also an actor.

As such, he knows what puts most TV films under the ground in an artistically reliable manner: scripts that are too artificial, direction announcements that are too precise, the editors have too much say.

In this way, most productions give away their potential and put an end to all dramatic spontaneity.

Schütte's improvisational actions, on the other hand, have grown into television events.

Dozens of the best performers, who know little more than the profile of their own role beforehand, regularly surpass themselves in it.

Speed ​​dating and wellness

In 2014, Schütte warmed up to his experimental films with the speed-dating film “Altersglühen” and two years later followed it up with the therapy comedy “Wellness for Couples”.

After the highlight so far, the enchanting large-scale production "Class Reunion" from 2019 (cut as a film as well as a series), the next Schütte-Prank follows.

With seventeen main roles and fifteen parallel sets alone, “Begräbnis” is even more complex and was planned as a series straight away.

The focus is on the extended Meurer family, based in a village on what was formerly the East German side of Lake Schaal.

The reason for their meeting, which turned into a battle, was the funeral of the head of the family, Wolff-Dieter, owner of the Meurer sanitary facility.

The funeral itself, slightly distorted into the grotesque – a speech by Pastor Wittig (Thomas Thieme) peppered with allusions to the life of the wisecracking Wolff-Dieter, which included both an East (Christine Schorn) and a West (Catrin Striebeck) wife, followed by a unspeakable male choir version of the Puhdys smash hit "Alt wie ein Baum" - already shows in which direction it will go. Above all, Charly Hübner and Devid Striesow shine with a lot of situational comedy in the roles of the unequal sons from their first (Eastern) marriage. As perfect as Striesow is in the character of the shabby braggart, Hübner has always embodied ingeniously - think of the film "Anderst schön" - good-natured giants with a simple disposition and powerful soul. Claudia Michelsen as the sister of the two, the daughter lost to the west,can easily keep up, and Enno Trebs cuts a good figure as his son Kevin from his second marriage, who is sensitive and undecided between his claim to art and the fate of gas, water and shit.