Hannes Balla is the foreman of a group of building construction workers at the large construction site "Schkona" in the GDR. They spend most of their time working hard and drinking harder - to some they are fun, to some they are a public nuisance. Things get more complicated when the good-looking Kati Klee is employed as a young technician, and the ambitious new Party Secretary, Werner Horrath, aims to boost work efficiency and downsize Balla's ego. Kati slowly warms up to Werner, but is also attracted to Balla's nonconformity. A contemporary movie about work, love, and everything in between. Written by
Director Frank Beyer originally planned to cast 'Armin Müller-Stahl' as Werner Horrath and Jutta Hoffmann as Kati Klee. However, both were involved in other projects at the time. Thus, the Polish actress Krystyna Stypulkowska got the role as Kati Klee and Jutta Hoffmann did the German voice-over for her. Beyer was happy with this decision for he believed that lending Klee's character a less well-known face would make her and her lovers' characters more ambiguous. See more »
When i studied the visual style of the film, the first thing i noticed was that it was set in a widescreen format. In order to fill the screen, the film has many scenes with crowds of people. It can be also observed that the Ballas are always in a firing-squad position resembling the Western Magnificent Seven.
Camera movements and shots are very conservative and minimal that it almost looks a documentary. It used a lot of panning and close-up shots. Over-the-shoulder shots are very rare.Flashbacks were not properly executed and the black and white format adds to the ambiguity. Overall, the film doesn't have the aesthetic appeal we often see in Hollywood films yet it remains one of the best German Films for its story and historical value.
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