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The Bridge (1959)

Die Brücke (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama, War | 1 May 1961 (USA)
In 1945, Germany is being overrun, and nobody is left to fight but teenagers.

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 15 wins. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Folker Bohnet ...
Hans Scholten
Fritz Wepper ...
Albert Mutz
Michael Hinz ...
Walter Forst
Frank Glaubrecht ...
Jurgen Borchert
Karl Michael Balzer ...
Karl Horber
Volker Lechtenbrink ...
Klaus Hager
Günther Hoffmann ...
Sigi Bernhard
...
Franziska
Wolfgang Stumpf ...
Stern
Günter Pfitzmann ...
Heilmann
Heinz Spitzner ...
Fröhlich
Siegfried Schürenberg ...
Lt. Colonel
Ruth Hausmeister ...
Mrs. Mutz
Eva Vaitl ...
Mrs. Borchert
Edith Schultze-Westrum ...
Mother Bernhard
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Storyline

A group of German boys is ordered to protect a small bridge in their home village during the waning months of the second world war. Truckloads of defeated, cynical Wehrmacht soldiers flee the approaching American troops, but the boys, full of enthusiasm for the "blood and honor" Nazi ideology, stay to defend the useless bridge. Written by Miranda Callahan

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

They look for love in a world of violence!

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

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Release Date:

1 May 1961 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Bridge  »

Filming Locations:


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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The bridge was called Florian-Geyer-Brücke. It was torn down in 1991 and replaced by a new one in 1995. There now are several plaques with film scenes there as a reminder of this movie. See more »

Goofs

The action takes place within a couple of days in the late spring of 1945 as the US forces were moving through Bavaria. However, the trees clearly show their late Autumn remaining foliage, instead of spring buds and new leaves. See more »

Connections

Featured in Die Nacht der Regisseure (1995) See more »

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User Reviews

Etched in the Mind
26 July 2002 | by (Hollywood) – See all my reviews

When I saw in news accounts the lovely yet fearful face of a 16 year-old, who had defected from the Taliban during the campaign against terrorists in Afghanistan, in the aftermath of the 9/11, I was taken back to Bernhard Wicki's Die Brücke (The Bridge), to the faces of young German boys who were recruited by the Nazis to defend a "last" bridgehead, in the final days of World War II in Europe. In both cases, young "true believers" were used as cannon fodder by cynical adults in their futile power games, which they had disguised as moral crusades.

A tiny band of boys, holding weapons as big as they, their bodies and faces still soft and fresh and tight, facing the juggernaut of tanks and artillery and machine guns which we know will soon tear them to pieces. And for what? An ideal?

I suspect that The Bridge was the basis for the Timothy Hutton, Sean Penn vehicle, "Taps". However, The Bridge is the starker and more brutal treatment because, unlike the what-if story of Taps, the what-if does not apply to The Bridge. In fact, throughout history, the use of children in furtherance of warfare has a sickening frequency, the earliest I know of being the Children's Crusade, and now we have the Tamil Tigers (little girls with lockets of cyanide vials) and Palestinian boy bombs.

The Bridge deserves to be revived and shown to as wide an audience as possible in this Dastardly New World we live in.


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