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The Berliner (1948)

Berliner Ballade (original title)
After he has luckily survived the war, Otto tries to build up his new life in the remains of Berlin.


(as R.A. Stemmle)


(story), (screenplay)
Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Complete credited cast:
Tatjana Sais ...
Ute Sielisch ...
Eva Wandel, Bäuerin
Aribert Wäscher ...
Anton Zeithammer
Der Reaktionär
Hans Deppe ...
Emil Lemke
Werner Oehlschlaeger ...
Raisonneur (as Werner Oehlschläger)
Erik Ode ...
Narrator (voice)
Karl Schönböck ...
Herbert Hübner ...
Herr Bollmann, politischer Redner
Alfred Schieske ...
Herr Schneidewind, Politischer Redner
Herbert Weissbach ...
Kurt Weitkamp
Franz-Otto Krüger ...
Einbrecher Franz
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Henry Morgan ...
Narrator (US version)


Told in the style of the German cabaret theatre, where both Gunther Neumann and Gert Frobe were important members, this is a balladeer's version of a serious plot with musical interludes. The year is 2050 and the audience is asked to look at a telecast of 'The Ancients", from a century ago. Flashback to Germany, 1948, where Otto Normalverbraucher (Otto Averageman in the English-narrated version) is just returning from service in the German army during World War II. His experiences, told tongue-in-cheek, of the troubles that beset the average, law-abiding German citizen in post-war, war-torn destitute Germany and his awareness of the changes and problems are the bulk of the story. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


OTTO BERLINER...Torn Between Love, Stomach and Politics!


Comedy | Musical


Passed | See all certifications »





Release Date:

31 December 1948 (Germany)  »

Also Known As:

The Berliner  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


Gert Fröbe's first film. See more »


Kopf hoch, die Sache wird schon schiefgeh'n
Written by Günter Neumann
Performed by Gert Fröbe
See more »

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User Reviews

A satiric look at life in postwar Berlin
23 July 2000 | by (New York) – See all my reviews

Life among the ruins of Berlin, centered around Mister Averageman. Topics include the black market, ration coupons and the difficulty of getting work.

Often feels like cabaret sketches opened up by location shooting. The ruins are impressive, and the sequence among the ruins of statues is perhaps the most interesting.

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