Rosamunde Pilcher: FOUR BALLOONS AND A FUNERAL
Gwen, a florist, works in a wholesale flower shop. Joey, the sympathetic boss of her company, ensnares her. With her somewhat overbearing mother Ellen, Gwen has an intense but also exhausting relationship. It’s a good thing that Ellen’s down-to-earth partner Ron supports Gwen and engages in amusing skirmishes with her mother about the right path to happiness and love. During a delivery at the cemetery, Gwen stumbles in a hurry and topples over into a dug grave. When she opens her eyes, a handsome man is bent over her. It is not an angel, but Lennard, the emergency doctor, but the magic between them is palpable. Lennard lives near Gwen with his daughter Thea. Gwen learns that Lennard’s wife died a little over a year ago after a hit-and-run accident. Gwen keeps her distance, partly because of her worried mother’s advice: it’s better to give grieving men a wide berth. Joey encourages Gwen, makes her his right-hand woman and soon the trusting, friendly cooperation develops into an affair.
Gwen finds a balloon with a message in her garden. It is from Thea, who wants to know from her mother in heaven if all is well up there. Touched, Gwen writes a reply from Thea’s mother to her child: Yes, she’s fine! She hangs the card with a balloon on Lennard and Thea’s garden fence. Then Lennard arrives at her door in a huff. He finds it unhelpful to pretend to his daughter that her mother is writing messages. Gwen confides in Lennard that she herself lost her father very young and suffered from the fact that for everyone else, including her mother, life went on. After a magical encounter and conflict, mutual understanding and compassion grow. But soon Thea’s second and then a third balloon hangs in Gwen’s garden. Remorseful, Gwen takes the hard walk to apologise to Thea for her encroaching action. Thea, however, has long known that the message came from Gwen – who clearly wants to set her up with her father, who finally has to look ahead again. Because Gwen is good for Thea, she and Lennard also see each other more often and become closer – supposedly as friends, but Lennard and Gwen, whose relationship with Joey deepens under Ellen’s gentle pressure, are not ready for anything more. The two cannot and will not admit to themselves that it is the great love that connects them. For the past holds Lennard in its grip. And Gwen is caught between two stools because Mickey, the accident driver with a gambling addiction, was a trusted associate of Gwen. Soon a bad suspicion creeps up on Lennard, because Mickey’s debts were settled shortly after the accident. Against great internal and external odds, Gwen finds out that it was none other than her friend and patron Joey who committed the hit-and-run at the time. Fearing that he would be found out, he had offered the over-indebted employee a lot of money to take the punishment. Gwen helps the law to prevail and withdraws from Joey. Gwen also comes clean with her mother, who reinvents her love for Ron. Finally, Lennard too can look forward to a life with his wonderful daughter and his second great love Gwen by his side.
Drama | 90 Min. | ZDF | 2021
Written by Karsten Rüter, Andreas Bradler
Director Nina Vukovic
Camera Holger Greiß
Executive Producer Vanessa Lackschéwitz, Michael Smeaton
Producer Ello Bolz
Cast Meriel Hinsching, Moritz Otto, Bernd-Christian Althoff, Janina Hartwig, Andreas Hoppe, Eline Doenst, Tony King, Janina Painter, Kerry Hutchinson et al.