April 1945. Because he stole two bars of chocolate, the soldier Rudi is sentenced to death by the court-martial judge Dr. Schramm. Rudi manages to escape from the firing squad at the last ... See full summary »
Ingrid van Bergen,
Diederich Heßling is scared of everything and everyone. But as he grows up, he comes to realize that he has to offer his services to the powers-that-be if he wants to wield power himself. ... See full summary »
1941, the Third Reich seems to be winning the war. Luftwaffe (air force) general Harry Harras enjoys the good life as highly respected technician and Berlin ministry/ HQ official. However ... See full summary »
Viktor de Kowa
As rumors reach them that the Allied armies are advancing on their concentration camp at Buchenwald, Polish prisoners renew their feeble hope for survival and freedom. When a group of ... See full summary »
Film opens with the mad rush of haphazard freedom as the concentration camps are liberated. Men are trying to grab food, change clothes, bury their tormentors they find alive. Then they are... See full summary »
When they start losing family members and neighbors due to WWII and the Nazi government's policies, a quiet married couple becomes disillusioned and begins spreading leaflets against the government - a crime punishable by death.
Susanne Wallner returns to the ruins of Berlin from a Concentration Camp after WW2 to discover that someone else lives in her apartment: Dr. Hans Mertens, the war made him depressive and he drinks a lot of alcohol. Susanne asks him to go but he doesn't want to, so they share Susanne's apartment and even discover their sympathy and then their love for each other. That encourages him a little, of course. But then he hears that Ferdinand Brückner is still alive and also lives in Berlin. Brückner was his Captain during WW2, he gave the order to kill more than 100 innocent people, many children and women among them, on Christmas 1942 in Poland. Written by
Excellent film for fans of mid-20th century movies
This film is certainly worthwhile for a serious student of movie history, given its circumstances. The first film released in post WW-II Germany, etc...Yes, the plot line development is predictable from the midpoint of the film onwards. And sure, there are the side-stories regarding post-war German guilt and apologia and its role in the making of this film. I'll give you all of that.
But the reason a movie lover wants to watch this film is two-fold. One, the stark B/W cinematography of this film is deeply affecting and very unique for the time period. And two, the wonderful, sublime beauty of a young Hildegard Knef. She is so fragile in this film, it's a real contrast with her later persona of the German song chantreuse of the 60s.
It's hard to find this movie on DVD, but it's out there. If you find it to buy or rent, give it a watch, well worth the time. 8/10 rating.
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