IMDb > Germany Year Zero (1948)
Germania, anno zero
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Germany Year Zero (1948) More at IMDbPro »Germania, anno zero (original title)

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Roberto Rossellini (screenplay)
Roberto Rossellini (dialogue) ...
View company contact information for Germany Year Zero on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
19 September 1949 (USA) See more »
The country is obliterated, the buildings are dilapidated and the people are desolated.
Edmund, a young boy who lives in war-devastated Germany after the Second World War has to do all kinds... See more » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
3 wins See more »
(42 articles)
User Reviews:
Marvelous study of character and atmosphere, a neo-realistic triumph... See more (39 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Edmund Moeschke ... Edmund (as Edmund Meschke)
Ernst Pittschau ... Il padre

Ingetraud Hinze ... Eva (as Ingetraud Hinz)
Franz-Otto Krüger ... Karl-Heinz (as Franz Grüger)
Erich Gühne ... Il maestro
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Heidi Blänkner ... Frau Rademaker (uncredited)
Jo Herbst ... Jo (uncredited)
Barbara Hintz ... Thilde (uncredited)

Adolf Hitler ... Himself (voice) (archive footage) (uncredited)
Karl Krüger ... Il medico (uncredited)
Alexandra Manys ... Amica di Eva (uncredited)
Christl Merker ... Christl (uncredited)
Gaby Raak ... La donna di generale (uncredited)
Inge Rocklitz ... Rifugiata (uncredited)
Hans Sangen ... Herr Rademaker (uncredited)
Babsi Schultz-Reckewell ... La figlia di Rademacher (uncredited)
Franz von Treuberg ... Il generale von Laubniz (uncredited)

Directed by
Roberto Rossellini 
Writing credits
Roberto Rossellini (screenplay)

Roberto Rossellini  dialogue and
Carlo Lizzani  and
Max Kolpé  dialogue (as Max Colpet)

Sergio Amidei (italian version)

Basilio Franchina  based on an idea by (uncredited)

Produced by
Salvo D'Angelo .... associate producer
Alfredo Guarini .... executive producer
Roberto Rossellini .... producer
Original Music by
Renzo Rossellini 
Cinematography by
Robert Juillard  (as Robert Julliard)
Film Editing by
Eraldo Da Roma 
Art Direction by
Piero Filippone 
Production Management
Marcello Bollero .... production supervisor
Alberto Manni .... production supervisor
Alfredo Guarini .... unit manager (uncredited)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Max Kolpé .... assistant director (as Max Colpet)
Carlo Lizzani .... assistant director
Franz von Treuberg .... assistant director (uncredited)
Sound Department
Kurt Doubrowsky .... sound technician (as Kurt Doubrawsky)
Camera and Electrical Department
Jacques Robin .... camera operator
Emil Puet .... camera operator (uncredited)
Music Department
Edoardo Micucci .... musical director
Other crew
Vincenzo Genesi .... laboratory technician (as V. Genesi)
Giancarlo Campidori .... production secretary (uncredited)
Charles Clement .... subtitler: English (1949 release) (uncredited)
Sonya Friedman .... subtitler (1978 English language version) (uncredited)
Ivo Garrani .... voice dubbing: Ernst Pittschau (Italian version ) (uncredited)
Flaminia Jandolo .... voice dubbing: Edmund Moeschke (Italian version ) (uncredited)
Marco Romano Rossellini .... dedicatee (as Mio figlio Romano)
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Germania, anno zero" - Italy (original title)
See more »
78 min | Brazil:71 min | USA:71 min (TCM print)
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (RCA Sound System)
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

According to his autobiography, Klaus Kinski went in to audition for an unspecified part for Roberto Rossellini when he came to Berlin. He claims that after hours of waiting while Rossellini was on the phone with Anna Magnani in another room, Kinski characteristically burst out in anger and cursed Rossellini. The Italian director was reputedly heard saying as Kinski was storming out: "Chi è quello? Mi interessa! Fategli un provino!" (Translation: "Who is he? Interesting! Arrange for a screen test!")See more »
Il maestro:Weren't you one of my students?
Edmund:Yes, Mr. Enning.
Il maestro:My memory's good. What's your name?
Edmund:Edmund Koeler.
Il maestro:Edmund Koeler. First desk on the left. You've grown up. How is your father?
Edmund:My father is sick, very sick.
Il maestro:Didn't you have a brother in the Wermacht?
Edmund:Yes, Karl-Heinz. He was in the military, but he's home now.
Il maestro:Then he must be out of work, like me.
Edmund:You're not teaching anymore?
See more »
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9 out of 13 people found the following review useful.
Marvelous study of character and atmosphere, a neo-realistic triumph..., 24 November 2003
Author: MisterWhiplash from United States

One of Roberto Rossellini's masterpieces, Germany Year Zero, suffers only from one minor liability, which is not totally the filmmaker's fault. The film was shot in German with the native language, but it was later shown around the world (at least I think around the world) in an Italian-dubbed print, which is also the version currently available on American DVD. True, Rossellini (as far as I know) didn't speak German, and he had it in Italian so he wouldn't have trouble getting the film distributed in his native land where he broke ground with Open City and Paisan. But it is a fair enough indication that not EVERYTHING in a film such as Germany Year Zero is based in total reality based on seeing this version. Once this is looked past though, one can get into the actual story and characters, which is what Rossellini is after- getting at least the emotional loss in this world perfectly clear.

Germany Year Zero - the third in a so-called trilogy of films that began with his breakthrough Open City and continued with Paisan - was brilliantly executed, in the quasi-documentary cinematography by Robert Juillard, the appropriately sorrowful score by Renzo Rossellini, and in the performances by first timers like Edmund Moeschke as Edmund Koeler (the main character), Ingetraude Hinze as Eva Koeler (Edmund's desperate sister), and Erich Guhne as Herr Enning (Edmund's ex-teacher who becomes a crucial supporting character). Edmund is a pre-teen who's lived through the devastation of the War, like his family, the families he lives with, and everyone else around him in the city, and he tries to get work despite his all-too-young age. Things seem bleak for his family, as his brother doesn't want to work for fear of being caught as a prisoner of the war, his elderly father can't work, and his sister goes out every night looking for things that only help herself. When Edmund runs into his once school-teacher (Enning), who is part of the cold, evil remnants of the Nazi regime, and this leads into the last act of the film, with startling, heart-breaking results.

While the story of Edmund- and of the line that scorches a kid's conscience between childhood innocence and the horrors of the real world- is a compelling and historically important one to tell, what Rossellini achieves here more than anything is the sense of dread in a desolate atmosphere. He achieved that in Open City too (I have yet to see Paisan so I can't comment), but that film had the tendency to take a little too much time involving us in sub-plots. In Germany Year Zero, however, the images presented stay with the viewer long after the film has ended since they're akin to the kind of sensibility Polanski had with The Pianist, in a technical sense- we're following someone in his own personal struggle for survival in an environment that's in rubble, with many of the people around the character without much hope. There's also the theme of sacrifice, like in the other two films in Rossellini's trilogy, and that plus a theme of a sort of helpless hope in human spirit, stays true through the seventy minutes of this film. Highly recommended (the language dubbing practically regardless).

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