Private Project

Trust Me

In East Berlin a couples perfect family life crumbles as the husband pursuit of freedom tests their marriage. Love, independence, and societal norms clash in a whirlwind of passion and vice.

In the faded beauty of East Berlin, Sebastian and Alicja seem to have it all—a thriving business and a loving family. But beneath the surface, Sebastian's yearning for freedom sparks a turbulent journey. Alicja, the devoted wife, reluctantly unlocks the door to his exploration of other women. As love, independence, and societal norms collide, Alicja's convictions are pushed to their breaking point. 'Trust Me' unveils the raw truths, exposing a wife's quest for self-discovery amidst the seductive allure of East Berlin. In the heart of the city, the pursuit of freedom becomes becomes an intoxicating reverie.

  • Joanna Ratajczak
  • Joanna Ratajczak
  • Joanna Piechotta
  • Stanislaw Zaborowski
  • Oliver Stoltz
  • Daria Maślona
  • Hanka Kastelicowa
  • Joanna Rost
    Key Cast
  • Sebastian Rost
    Key Cast
  • Camila Diaz del Los Reyes
    Key Cast
  • Project Type:
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 30 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    December 25, 2023
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
    Germany, Poland
  • Language:
    English, German, Polish
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Distribution Information
  • HBO Europe
    Country: Poland
    Rights: Video on Demand, Paid TV
    Country: Germany
    Rights: Video on Demand, Paid TV
Director Biography - Joanna Ratajczak

Joanna Ratajczak
graduated in 2001 with a degree in journalism from the School of Humani9es and Journalism in Poznań (Polen). AHer gradua9ng, she moved to Berlin permanently. In 2005, she started working at the German radio sta9on JazzRadio Berlin, where she hosted the Morning Show. For her La9n Jazz programme JazzRio! Joanna won a bronze medal at the 2014 New York Interna9onal Radio Programming Awards. In addi9on to her radio show, Joanna was ac9ve in the Berlin Dj scene, also lunching her own events and concerts.
In TV, since 2011 Joanna has made more than 150 reports, series and documentaries for German TV Berlin and Rundfunk Berlin Brandenburg. Joanna has been nominated three 9mes for the Polish-German Tadeusz Mazowiecki Journalism Award for her TV work.
In 2019, Joanna completed the DOK PRO study programme at the Wajda Film School in Warsaw.

Add Director Biography
Director Statement

As a longtime friend of my two protagonists, I move freely and impartially in their personal environment. For a long time, I have therefore observed with great interest how the relationship of the two presents itself and, above all, how it develops. Curiously questioning, I was suddenly confronted in winter 2018 with the changed situation that had resulted from Sebastian's expression of desire. From the intense conversations about values, certainties, hopes and fears on the part of the two sprang my desire to document this exchange and this development as such and to make a film about the traditions, concepts, problems and possibilities of couple relationships in today's world.
First approaches with the camera motivated both me and the protagonists to invest work and time in this project. Alicja was immediately, Sebastian after a very short habituation phase, able to accept and also forget me and the camera as witness. The results of the first days together show an extraordinary
naturalness in the behavior of the two in front of the camera.
Presenting one's own circumstances to a more or less large public is no longer anything fundamentally special at a time when people are constantly presenting themselves via social media. The walls that protected the private sphere not long ago, behind which people hid problems and flaws, are becoming increasingly transparent. But self-portrayal usually takes place in a controlled form. The respective actor himself determines how he is seen from the outside and does not necessarily show himself in his authentic form. Alicja and Sebastian, on the other hand, do not play, but simply leave the door open a crack whenever they are ready to share. Just as in their relationship itself, creating this film is about
openness and truthfulness. This openness and truthfulness surprises me again and again, and the same applies to most of the people who have been confronted with their story so far.
As do thousands of couples every day. Why?
looking for fullfillment in other ways.
About half of European adults cheat in their relationship. Infidelity is the most common reason for divorce. Jealousy is the main cause of fatal acts of violence in Western countries. More than half of the husbands and wives admit that they do not find their sexual desires fulfilled with their partner. The classic normality in relationships is: lie, cheat, hurt, break up.
One of the ways is to open up oneself to a whole new extent. This often includes the disclosure of intimate longings and desires. However, a disclosure of such desires usually entails a discussion of the possibilities of their fulfillment. The basic concept of my protagonists' relationship is the unadorned.
The film shows people disclosure of all thoughts. My film is intended to make this disclosure and the resulting consequences tangible for the viewer. The idea is that the viewer experiences and feels what happens when even the last questions are asked and answered as openly as possible.
The prurience with which the topic of opening a partnership is treated in the superficial public discussion obscures the difficult and certainly in most cases painful process of starting a culture of sharing in relationships. It is precisely this process that I would like to confront the viewer with.
What does it mean to have a long-term stable relationship in a world where everything we desire seems to be readily available? In which we have access to hundreds of potential new partners? In which, if things are no longer going well in the existing relationship, we can even select and contact someone at any time with the help of our smartphones?
We are observing a new social phenomenon: the search for new rules and perhaps also for a new morality. This is not, however, how we are brought up and prepared for life in Poland. Every fairy tale about a princess, romantic movies and relationships that surround us, reinforce a belief that happiness in love is a one-to-one arrangement. Our grandmothers, aunts and mothers teach us partnership in this way. Church und society forbid other solutions. Is it possible to cut off these roots and program yourself for an alternative approach? If so, what is the cost of this transformation and what remains of the bond of love after we destroy the foundations we know?
Alicja and Sebastian experience a crisis at a point where many of us have been in a relationship. The point where cracks appear on a formerly smooth surface, where questions are asked to which there are no easy answers. We don't know where the protagonists will lead us. Alicja and Sebastian begin a new chapter in their lives as a couple, leaving the door open for us to see the most personal, hidden nooks and crannies of their characters. Anything can happen, just like any other relationship at any time.