The Aftermath (2019 film)

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The Aftermath
Theatrical release poster
Directed byJames Kent
Screenplay by
  • Joe Shrapnel
  • Anna Waterhouse
Based onThe Aftermath
2013 novel
by Rhidian Brook
Produced by
CinematographyFranz Lustig
Edited byBeverley Mills
Music byMartin Phipps
Distributed byFox Searchlight Pictures
Release dates
  • 26 February 2019 (2019-02-26) (GFF)
  • 1 March 2019 (2019-03-01) (United Kingdom)
  • 15 March 2019 (2019-03-15) (United States)
Running time
108 minutes
  • United Kingdom
  • Germany
  • United States
  • English
  • German
Box office$9.2 million[1]

The Aftermath is a 2019 drama film directed by James Kent and written by Joe Shrapnel and Anna Waterhouse, based on the 2013 novel of the same name by Rhidian Brook. It stars Keira Knightley, Alexander Skarsgård and Jason Clarke. The film had its world premiere at the Glasgow Film Festival on 26 February 2019.[2] It was released in the United States on 15 March 2019, by Fox Searchlight Pictures.[3] It is the last Fox Searchlight Pictures film to be released before the acquisition of 21st Century Fox by Disney.


The Aftermath is set in British occupation zone in post-war Germany in 1945. Rachael Morgan arrives in the ruins of Hamburg in the bitter German winter to be reunited with her husband Lewis Morgan, a colonel of British Forces Germany charged with rebuilding the shattered city and dealing with violent insurgent Werwolf activities. The couple, whose relationship is tense due to their son Michael being killed during the Blitz by German bombing, will be staying in the requisitioned house of German architect Stefan Lubert and his teenage daughter Freda Lubert. Lewis decides to let Stefan and Freda stay in the house in the attic, a decision that Rachael is initially unhappy with because of her resentment toward Germans over Michael's death. She is very rude to Stefan. Meanwhile, Freda connects with Bertie, a young German deeply involved in the Werwolf movement.

However, Rachael bonds with Stefan over shared grief: Stefan's wife was killed by Allied bombing. Rachael and Stefan begin having an affair. The situation is complicated by British Forces Germany suspecting Stefan of Werwolf involvement, though it is actually Freda's boyfriend Bertie who is involved. Lewis eventually realises Rachael and Stefan are having an affair when he hears of her advocating on Stefan's behalf. When Lewis confronts Rachael, she tells him that she is leaving him to be with Stefan. Bertie tries to assassinate Lewis but instead kills Lewis' chauffeur by mistake. Bertie attempts to escape through the woods but falls through ice to his death. Lewis tells Rachael to leave the next morning. After Lewis admits his grief over Michael to Rachael, she hugs him. She accompanies Stefan and Freda to the railway station but decides to stay with Lewis instead of leaving with Stefan.



In August 2016, it was announced Fox Searchlight Pictures acquired the film, with Alexander Skarsgård and Keira Knightley, James Kent directing it from a screenplay by Joe Shrapnel and Anna Waterhouse, while Ridley Scott as a producer under his Scott Free Productions banner.[4][5] That same month, Jason Clarke joined the cast of the film.[6] In February 2017, Fionn O'Shea joined the cast.[7]

Principal photography began in January 2017, in Prague, Czech Republic.[8]

Home media[edit]

The Aftermath was released on DVD and Blu-ray on 11 June 2019.[9]


Box office[edit]

The Aftermath has grossed $9.2 million worldwide.[9][1]

Critical response[edit]

The review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, reported that 27% of critics have given the film a positive review based on 156 reviews, with an average rating of 5/10. The website's critics consensus reads, "Tasteful to a fault, The Aftermath is worth seeking out only for the most passionate period drama enthusiasts."[10] On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 43 out of 100 based on 33 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews."[11]


  1. ^ a b "The Aftermath (2019)". Box Office Mojo. IMDb. Retrieved 9 June 2019.
  2. ^ "Full programme announced for Glasgow Film Festival 2019". Glasgow Film Theatre. 7 February 2019. Retrieved 17 February 2019.
  3. ^ Galuppo, Mia (31 May 2018). "Fox Searchlight Sets Date for Keira Knightley Post-War Drama 'The Aftermath'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 8 June 2018.
  4. ^ Fleming, Mike Jr. (17 August 2016). "Fox Searchlight Lands 'The Aftermath' With Keira Knightley & Alexander Skarsgard". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 21 March 2017.
  5. ^ Galuppo, Mia (17 August 2016). "Keira Knightley, Alexander Skarsgard in Talks to Star in 'Aftermath' for Fox Searchlight, Scott-Free". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 22 March 2017.
  6. ^ Kroll, Justin (18 August 2016). "Jason Clarke in Talks to Join Keira Knightley in 'The Aftermath' (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved 22 March 2017.
  7. ^ Barraclough, Leo (9 February 2017). "Fionn O'Shea Joins Keira Knightley, Alexander Skarsgard in 'The Aftermath' (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved 22 March 2017.
  8. ^ "The Aftermath filmed Prague as post war Germany". KFTV. Retrieved 17 April 2020.
  9. ^ a b "The Aftermath (2019)". The Numbers. Nash Information Services, LLC. Retrieved 22 May 2019.
  10. ^ "The Aftermath (2019)". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango. Retrieved 10 October 2021.
  11. ^ "The Aftermath Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 6 August 2019.

External links[edit]