IMDb > The Tin Drum (1979)
Die Blechtrommel
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The Tin Drum (1979) More at IMDbPro »Die Blechtrommel (original title)

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Overview

User Rating:
7.6/10   15,452 votes »
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Up 10% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Writers:
Jean-Claude Carrière (writer)
Günter Grass (additional dialogue)
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for The Tin Drum on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
11 April 1980 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
Academy Award Winner Best Foreign Language Film 1979 See more »
Plot:
Danzig in the 1920s/1930s. Oskar Matzerath, son of a local dealer, is a most unusual boy. Equipped with... See more » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
Won Oscar. Another 15 wins & 5 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
Absorbing and Thought Provoking See more (75 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)
Mario Adorf ... Alfred Matzerath
Angela Winkler ... Agnes Matzerath

David Bennent ... Oskar Matzerath
Katharina Thalbach ... Maria Matzerath

Daniel Olbrychski ... Jan Bronski
Tina Engel ... Anna Koljaiczek (jung)
Berta Drews ... Anna Koljaiczek
Roland Teubner ... Joseph Koljaiczek
Tadeusz Kunikowski ... Onkel Vinzenz
Andréa Ferréol ... Lina Greff (as Andréa Ferreol)
Heinz Bennent ... Greff
Ilse Pagé ... Gretchen Scheffler
Werner Rehm ... Scheffler
Käte Jaenicke ... Mutter Truczinski
Helmut Brasch ... Der Alte Heilandt (as Helmuth Brasch)

Otto Sander ... Musiker Meyn
Wigand Witting ... Herbert Truczinski
Mariella Oliveri ... Roswitha
Fritz Hakl ... Bebra
Emil Feist ... 1.Clown
Herbert Behrendt ... 2.Clown
Karl Heinz Tittelbach ... Felix

Charles Aznavour ... Sigismund Markus
Marek Walczewski ... Schugger-Leo
Ernst Jacobi ... Löbsack
Wojciech Pszoniak ... Fajngold
Gerda Blisse ... Frl. Spollenhauer
Joachim Hackethal ... Hochwürden Wiehnke
Henning Schlüter ... Dr. Hollatz
Zygmunt Hubner ... Dr. Michon (as Zygmunt Huebner)
Mieczyslaw Czechowicz ... Kobyella
Bruno Thost ... Obergefreiter Lankes
Alexander von Richthofen ... Pvt. Herzog
Lech Grzmocinski ... Stauer (as L. Grzmocinski)
Stanislaw Michalski ... 1.Gendarme (as S. Michalski)
J. Kapinski ... 2.Gendarme
Dietrich Frauboes ... Oberartz - Medical Chief
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Horst Gentzen ... Felix (voice) (uncredited)

Adolf Hitler ... Himself (voice) (archive footage) (uncredited)
Reinhard Kolldehoff ... Eel Catcher (voice) (uncredited)
Günter Meisner ... Gesundheitspolizist (uncredited)

Beata Pozniak ... Extra (uncredited)
Lutz Riedel ... Soldier (voice) (uncredited)

Raphaël Vogt ... Peter (uncredited)
Herbert Weissbach ... Fajngold (voice) (uncredited)

Directed by
Volker Schlöndorff 
 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Jean-Claude Carrière  writer
Günter Grass  additional dialogue
Günter Grass  novel
Volker Schlöndorff  writer
Franz Seitz  writer

Produced by
Eberhard Junkersdorf .... executive producer
Hans Prescher .... producer: HR
Franz Seitz .... producer
Anatole Dauman .... producer (uncredited)
Volker Schlöndorff .... producer (uncredited)
 
Original Music by
Maurice Jarre 
 
Cinematography by
Igor Luther 
 
Film Editing by
Suzanne Baron 
 
Production Design by
Piotr Dudzinski 
Zeljko Senecic 
 
Art Direction by
Nicos Perakis 
 
Set Decoration by
Marijan Marcius  (as Marijan Marcijus)
Edouard Pezzoli 
Paul Weber 
 
Costume Design by
Inge Heer 
Dagmar Niefind 
Yoshio Yabara  (as Yoshy Yabara)
 
Makeup Department
Rino Carboni .... makeup artist
Albina Mackic .... makeup artist
Vitaliana Patacca .... hair stylist (as Vitaliana Potacka)
Ingeborg Thiess .... hair stylist
Alfredo Tiberi .... makeup artist
Teresa Tomaszewska .... makeup artist
Ruzica Vidmar .... key makeup artist (as Ruza Vidmar)
 
Production Management
Dominik Baltic .... unit manager
Donko Buljan .... production manager
Emir Cejvan .... production manager
André Heinrich .... production manager
Siegfried Hofbauer .... production manager
Herbert Kerz .... production manager
Czeslaw Klak .... unit manager
Urszula Orczykowska .... production manager
Marko Vrdoljak .... production manager
Emir Vrodoljak .... production manager
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Wolfgang Krake .... assistant director
Branko Lustig .... assistant director
Richard Malbequi .... assistant director
Andrzej Reiter .... assistant director
Alexander von Richthofen .... assistant director
 
Art Department
Dominique Antony .... set constructor
Pierre Audouard .... props
Ivo Baltic .... props
Franz Bauer .... props
Ewa Kowalska .... set constructor
Tadeusz Kunikowski .... props
Christian Lenz .... props
Bernd Lepel .... set designer
Boleslaw Miziolek .... props
Barbara Nowak .... set designer
Stanislaw Nowak .... painter
Tihomir Piletic .... set designer
Thomas Schulz .... props
Bogdan Serwa .... painter
Ivo Stjejan .... props
 
Sound Department
Peter Beil .... sound
Walter Grundauer .... sound
Peter Kellerhals .... sound (as Walter Kellerhals)
Hans-Dieter Schwarz .... sound mixer (as Hans Dieter Schwarz)
 
Special Effects by
Georges Iaconelli .... pyrotechnician (as Georges Jaconelli)
Josif Karovski .... weapons
Krzysztof Szwed .... pyrotechnician
Nikola Vujasinovic .... pyrotechnician
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Peter Arnold .... assistant camera
Slawomir Baranski .... gaffer
Pero Bernakovic .... electrician
Andrzej Biskupski .... still photographer
Zvonko Blaskovic .... gaffer
Karl Dillitzer .... lighting technician
Antun Gorisek .... grip
Ulla Hübner .... still photographer
Stanislav Jesih .... lighting technician
Eugeniusz Kapelak .... electrician
Vlado Loncaric .... gaffer
Stanislaw Piech .... lighting technician
Drago Poldrugac .... gaffer
Karl Reiter .... still photographer
Peter Seitz .... still photographer
Nikolaus Starkmeth .... assistant camera
Paul Weber .... lighting technician
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Krystyna Bartosik .... wardrobe
Anica Cerovac .... wardrobe
Marko Cerovac .... costumer
Zofia Jedrzejczak .... wardrobe
Renée Miquel .... wardrobe
Elzbieta Radke .... costumer
Franjo Simek .... wardrobe
 
Editorial Department
Helga Kusterka .... assistant editor
Agape von Dorstewitz .... assistant editor (as Agape Dorstewitz)
Barbara von Weitershausen .... assistant editor (as Barbara v. Weitershausen)
 
Music Department
Lothar Brühne .... composer: song "Kann Denn Liebe Sünde Sein?" (uncredited)
Maurice Jarre .... conductor (uncredited)
Jan Latham-Koenig .... musician: piano (uncredited)
Carl Loubé .... orchestra (uncredited)
Sidney Sax .... orchestra contractor (uncredited)
Eric Tomlinson .... music engineer (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Andrzej Dojnik .... production assistant
Ute Ehmke .... location manager
Paulette Hufnagel .... production administrator
Ingrid Höller .... production secretary
Louis Mayr .... location manager
Jean Claude Mouliére .... location manager
Franjo Proscan .... production secretary
Lilo Schick .... script supervisor
Gabriele Seitz .... press relations
Amelia Statkiewicz .... production administrator
Ivan Steiger .... toys provided by
Günther M. Stocklöv .... location manager (as Günter Stocklöv)
Zygmunt Wójcik .... location manager
 
Crew believed to be complete


Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Die Blechtrommel" - West Germany (original title)
See more »
Runtime:
142 min | Germany:162 min (director's cut) | Netherlands:132 min (1980 cut)
Color:
Black and White | Color (Eastmancolor)
Aspect Ratio:
2.20 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (35 mm prints) | 70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)
Certification:
Argentina:X (original rating) | Argentina:18 (re-rating) | Australia:R | Australia:MA (re-rating) (2007) | Canada:R (Manitoba/Ontario) | Canada:(Banned) (Ontario) (original rating) | Finland:K-16 | France:-12 | Hong Kong:III | New Zealand:R18 | Norway:18 | Singapore:R21 | South Korea:18 | Sweden:15 | UK:X (original rating) (cut) | UK:15 (re-rating) (2003) (uncut) | UK:15 (re-rating) (1994) (cut) | USA:R | West Germany:16 (bw)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Acclaimed Polish-British actress Beata Pozniak made her movie debut as an extra when scenes were shot right outside her home.See more »
Goofs:
Anachronisms: While depicting the picnic scene on top of the bunker roof, in the background are clearly visible remains of the Mulberry harbor, Arromanches, France. This artificial harbor was set up days after the D-Day landing, yet the scene plays way before it.See more »
Quotes:
Agnes Matzerath:Don't expect me to touch your eels.
Alfred Matzerath:Don't put on airs.
Agnes Matzerath:I'll never eat fish again. Certainly not eels.
Alfred Matzerath:You've always eaten them, and you knew where they came from!
See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in Skylab (2011)See more »

FAQ

What are the differences between the Theatrical Version and the German TV Version?
What are the differences between the Theatrical Version and the Director's Cut?
See more »
53 out of 75 people found the following review useful.
Absorbing and Thought Provoking, 5 August 2002
Author: Howard Schumann from Vancouver, B.C.

"That day, thinking about the grown-up world and my own future, I decided to call a halt. To stop growing then and there and remain a three-year-old, a gnome, once and for all" - Oskar Metzertath

The Tin Drum is based on Gunter Grass's highly acclaimed novel which used magic realism to capture the madness of war, and the folly of the people who made it possible. This movie only tackles the first two sections of the novel, leaving out the post-war events. The film won the Academy Award for Best Foreign film in 1980, and the Palm d'Or at Cannes. It was also banned in Oklahoma as "child pornography". Despite moments of brilliance, The Tin Drum left me feeling incomplete and curiously unmoved.

It is a very different kind of film from the others I saw this week, using satire and surrealism to explore people's reactions during the period from 1939 to 1945. It seems to be saying that it is all right to stop growing (that is, participating in the world) as a protest against the cynicism and corruption of the adult world. The setting for the majority of the film, Danzig (now Gdansk) is a major northern port town in Poland. Danzig was a free and independent city until September 1, 1939, when it became the first region taken by Germany at the outset of WWII. After the war, Danzig became a part of Poland again.

The Tin Drum is the story of Oskar Matzerath, a boy who grows up in Eastern Germany before and during World War II. Oskar decides the only way to protest being part of the adult world is by banging on his drum and remaining a child forever. This is his rebuttal of society and his tin drum is his protest against the mentality of his family and neighborhood, or perhaps against all passive people in Nazi Germany at that time. Oskar tries to shock the world out of its inhumanity. His life reflects Germany's struggle to free itself from its own dream of Teutonic superiority and find peace in the national soul.

David Bennent as Oskar gives an outstanding performance, creating a character that is both haunting and frightening. He looks like a little man in a child's body but his eyes are deep and have a very knowing look that seemed to be looking right through me.

Oskar is not a cute little updated version of Peter Pan. Since age three (when he was given his first tin drum), Oskar can scream with such a high pitch that he can shatter any piece of glass. He even controls his scream to the point where he can break windows on the other side of the city, or etch writing into glass. Oskar uses his ability to manipulate and control the adult world, often using vicious and cynical snide comments about the insanity around him. At one point, he disrupts a Nazi rally by changing the beat of his tin drum to the Blue Danube which the band then follows. The ensuing scene where the crowd breaks into a dance and the rain comes down leaving the Nazi soldiers bewildered is one of the best in the film.

I found the scenes where Oskar joins a midget troupe and finds loving companions of his own kind to be very tender and moving. However, the film became morally ambiguous for me when Oskar and his troupe decide to entertain the Nazi soldiers at the front lines. Schlondorff never really makes it clear what his motivations are and Oskar's actions seems to contradict his essentially anarchist protest for most of the film. The Tin Drum also contains some objectionable scenes of childhood sexuality and grotesque depictions of slithering eels being caught using a severed horse head as bait. The result, needless to say, is stomach churning.

I found The Tin Drum to be absorbing and thought provoking yet, despite moments of brilliance, for me it did not add up to a totally satisfying experience.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (75 total) »

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