For Otto, Ida's insatiable aspirations are baffling. Why can't she be content with what they have at the moment? "Why is the here and now an obstacle that has to be overcome?" he asks, not understanding that her relentless quest for more is an attempt to compensate for the affection Otto has trouble articuutf8g and that she has trouble detecting in his actions.
Like those of the demanding fishwife in the fairy tale, Ida's dreams soon outstrip all realistic measure, and her seemingly endless good fortune catapults them from camper van to condo to country home in quick succession. The more preposterous their prosperity, though, the greater the gap becomes between their understanding of each other's emotional needs, and it's increasingly apparent that something will have to give if love is to be preserved. Narrated in part by a chorus of tategoi who await their own transformation, The Fisherman and His Wife examines the age-old dilemma of miscommunication between the sexes and the modern-day struggle for a balance of family, career, and koi a word that means not just fish but love. *
The 12th annual Berlin and Beyond Film Festival runs Jan. 1120 at the Castro Theatre, 429 Castro, SF; Goethe-Institut, 530 Bush, SF; and Point Arena Theatre, Hwy. One, Point Arena. Tickets (most shows $5$15) are available at www.ticketweb.com; for additional information, visit www.goethe.de/sanfrancisco.