Lola time for 'Four Minutes'

Named best film; 'Decisions' gets 4

Chris Kraus' "Four Minutes" was the surprise winner of the Lola for best film at the 2007 German Film Awards.

The story of an elderly piano teacher who trains a young convict at a women's penitentiary, "Minutes" beat competition including Tom Tykwer's opulent epic "Perfume: The Story of a Murderer" for the top prize at Friday's awards ceremony.

Veteran actress Monica Bleibtreu won the Lola for her tour de force performance as the piano teacher in "Minutes." Bleibtreu accepted the prize on her 63rd birthday to a standing ovation from the crowd of German film professionals.

The other big surprise Friday was "Grave Decisions." A small, low-budget comedy shot in an almost-incomprehensible Bavarian dialect, "Decisions" won four Lolas, including best director for first-timer Marcus H. Rosenmueller and the runner-up Silver Lola for best film.

"Perfume" also won a Silver Lola, but it was in the technical categories, where Tykwer's tale of a scent-obsessed serial killer sniffed at the competition.

"Perfume" swept the technical awards, taking Lolas for Frank Griebe's cinematography, Alexander Brenner's editing, Pierre-Yves Gayraud's costume design and Uli Hanisch's sets as well as the golden statuette for best sound design.

Josef Bierbichler, a heavyweight of the German theater scene, won the best actor Lola for his caustic performance as an angry, beaten-down man in Hans Steinbichler's "Winter Journey."

In the supporting categories, newcomer Hannah Herzsprung won the Lola for her role in Alain Gsponer's drama "Life Actually," while Devid Striesow got the nod for his role in Stefan Ruzowitzky's "The Counterfeiters."

Michael Glawogger's "Workingman's Death," which explores the extremes of manual labor around the world, won the documentary prize.

The Lola for best children's film went to Detlev Buck's "Hands Off Mississippi," an adaptation of the novel by Cornelia Link ("Inkheart").

The Lolas, voted on by the members of the German Film Academy, are the country's most prestigious film awards.

A complete list of winners can be found at www.hollywood