MOVIEmeter
Top 5000
Up 101 this week

Das Boot (1981)

R  |   |  Adventure, Drama, War  |  10 February 1982 (USA)
8.4
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 8.4/10 from 152,487 users   Metascore: 86/100
Reviews: 421 user | 91 critic | 15 from Metacritic.com

The claustrophobic world of a WWII German U-boat; boredom, filth, and sheer terror.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (novel)
Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

From $9.99 on Amazon Instant Video

ON DISC

Family Entertainment Guide

Check out IMDb's comprehensive Family Entertainment Guide for recommendations for movies and TV series for every age and every viewing platform.

Visit our Family Entertainment Guide

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 30 titles
created 03 Dec 2011
 
a list of 28 titles
created 08 Jan 2012
 
list image
Ver
a list of 31 titles
created 26 Feb 2012
 
a list of 40 titles
created 10 Jul 2012
 
a list of 26 titles
created 10 May 2014
 

Related Items

Search for "Das Boot" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Das Boot (1981)

Das Boot (1981) on IMDb 8.4/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Das Boot.

User Polls

Top 250 Movies #71 | Nominated for 6 Oscars. Another 13 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Das Boot (TV Mini-Series 1985)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 9.1/10 X  

A World War II German U-Boat crew have a terrifying patrol mission in the early days of the war.

Stars: Jürgen Prochnow, Herbert Grönemeyer, Klaus Wennemann
M (1931)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

When the police in a German city are unable to catch a child-murderer, other criminals join in the manhunt.

Director: Fritz Lang
Stars: Peter Lorre, Ellen Widmann, Inge Landgut
Downfall (2004)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

Traudl Junge, the final secretary for Adolf Hitler, tells of the Nazi dictator's final days in his Berlin bunker at the end of WWII.

Director: Oliver Hirschbiegel
Stars: Bruno Ganz, Alexandra Maria Lara, Ulrich Matthes
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

Based on the 1935 novel of the same name, it tells the story of an ill-fated assault on German forces by French soldiers, and the grippling consequences those soldiers face when they refuse to follow through with it.

Director: Stanley Kubrick
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Ralph Meeker, Adolphe Menjou
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

A former Prohibition-era Jewish gangster returns to the Lower East Side of Manhattan over thirty years later, where he once again must confront the ghosts and regrets of his old life.

Director: Sergio Leone
Stars: Robert De Niro, James Woods, Elizabeth McGovern
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

A filmmaker recalls his childhood, when he fell in love with the movies at his village's theater and formed a deep friendship with the theater's projectionist.

Director: Giuseppe Tornatore
Stars: Philippe Noiret, Enzo Cannavale, Antonella Attili
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

In 1984 East Berlin, an agent of the secret police, conducting surveillance on a writer and his lover, finds himself becoming increasingly absorbed by their lives.

Director: Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck
Stars: Ulrich Mühe, Martina Gedeck, Sebastian Koch
Amadeus (1984)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

The incredible story of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, told by his peer and secret rival Antonio Salieri - now confined to an insane asylum.

Director: Milos Forman
Stars: F. Murray Abraham, Tom Hulce, Elizabeth Berridge
Adventure | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

After settling his differences with a Japanese PoW camp commander, a British colonel co-operates to oversee his men's construction of a railway bridge for their captors - while oblivious to a plan by the Allies to destroy it.

Director: David Lean
Stars: William Holden, Alec Guinness, Jack Hawkins
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

During the Vietnam War, Captain Willard is sent on a dangerous mission into Cambodia to assassinate a renegade colonel who has set himself up as a god among a local tribe.

Director: Francis Ford Coppola
Stars: Martin Sheen, Marlon Brando, Robert Duvall
Adventure | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

A hapless New York advertising executive is mistaken for a government agent by a group of foreign spies, and is pursued across the country while he looks for a way to survive.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Cary Grant, Eva Marie Saint, James Mason
The Sting (1973)
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

In Chicago in September 1936, a young con man seeking revenge for his murdered partner teams up with a master of the big con to win a fortune from a criminal banker.

Director: George Roy Hill
Stars: Paul Newman, Robert Redford, Robert Shaw
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Klaus Wennemann ...
Hubertus Bengsch ...
1st Lieutenant - Number One-1WO
Martin Semmelrogge ...
2nd Lieutenant - 2WO
Bernd Tauber ...
Kriechbaum - Chief Quartermaster-Navigator
Erwin Leder ...
Johann
Martin May ...
Ullman
Heinz Hoenig ...
Hinrich (as Heinz Hönig)
...
Chief Bosun
Claude-Oliver Rudolph ...
Ario
...
Ralf Richter ...
Frenssen (as Ralph Richter)
Joachim Bernhard ...
Preacher
Oliver Stritzel ...
Schwalle
Edit

Storyline

It is 1942 and the German submarine fleet is heavily engaged in the so-called "Battle of the Atlantic" to harass and destroy British shipping. With better escorts of the Destroyer Class, however, German U-Boats have begun to take heavy losses. "Das Boot" is the story of one such U-Boat crew, with the film examining how these submariners maintained their professionalism as soldiers and attempted to accomplish impossible missions, all the while attempting to understand and obey the ideology of the government under which they served. Written by Anthony Hughes <husnock31@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

40 000 men were sent out on German U-boats... 30 000 never returned See more »

Genres:

Adventure | Drama | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some war violence and brief language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

10 February 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Das Boot  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$14,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$68,369 (USA) (4 April 1997)

Gross:

$11,433,134 (USA) (25 April 1997)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (director's cut) | (VHS)

Sound Mix:

(director's cut)| (original release)| (director's cut)

Color:

(Fujicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Several additional scenes were scripted based on the original "Das Boot" novel, but in the end were never filmed due to budget and time constraints. In the original script, the U-Boat departs from St. Nazaire and docks at La Rochelle only at the end of the film due to heavy damage and an inability to reach its home port. The escape out of Gibraltar is also extended somewhat including the U-boat stopping a passenger liner and nearly sinking it, but at the last moment realizing the ship is of Spanish registry. The U-boat also encounters another submarine with an inexperienced crew at the entrance to La Rochelle harbor. The second submarine strikes a mine and the entire crew must be rescued. Finally, the character of Lieutenant Werner is much more heavily explored in the original script, including a love interest where Werner was seeing a French girl and by the end of the film suspected she was a member of the French resistance. See more »

Goofs

On the Weser, the captain says he has never had fresh figs before, but he demonstrates the correct technique of opening one to get at the flesh inside. However, throughout the movie he proves to be a wise person who can figure out fast the best way to eat the fruit. See more »

Quotes

Captain: Okay, men, now listen. We're going to blow out the water now and see if we can get our rear ends out of the sand. If we make it to the surface, things could still get pretty rough. Traffic's heavy up there. And we have to pray the engines start, so we can get out of this mess. The condition the boat is in, we have got to head straight for La Rochelle. If we make it... it's half a bottle of beer for each! There is one thing on our side; they won't be expecting us. Well men, all set?
The Crew: [in unison] ...
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Gilmore Girls: Lorelai? Lorelai? (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Sing Nachtigall Sing
(uncredited)
Performed by Evelyn Kunneke
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Epic
1 April 2005 | by (USA) – See all my reviews

What impresses me the most about the film, as the title makes apparent, is that it's a German made film about a German U-boat. Patriotism for my own country would tend to make me hate the crew on this ship by definition (especially if portrayed as typical mindless killing machine Nazis), but these characters are so well developed and played like human-beings facing difficult decisions that I find myself sympathizing with these guys.

I love the flow and pacing of the Director's Cut; it takes its time, and does not feel like typical Hollywood formula "first major plot point at minute 12" cookie-cutter routine. Das Boot gives us plenty of time to know these characters, discover how they kill time while waiting for orders, how they feel about their job and each other. Then when the action finally starts: how they deal with the possibility of dying deep underwater, how they react to the sounds of a sub going deeper than it should, the look on their faces as a destroyer is heard pinging them, and dozens of little personality quirks--subtle details that bring the crew to life. It truly does feel like an epic about a submarine crew, and I'm interested in some day viewing the 6 hour TV version.

The underwater battles somewhat remind me of Sergio Leone in that Wolfgang Peterson takes forever and a day to get the fights started. Unlike Leone, once the torpedos are launched and the depth charges dropped, the cat-and-mouse game is ongoing and relentless, but never boring.

And despite the fact that most of the film takes place inside a cramped submarine, Das Boot is never boring to look at; in fact, it's a visually spectacular film (given the dated special effects, who hold up reasonably well and add to the old-school charm). And the freedom of the camera in those tight corridors came as an incredibly pleasant surprise. The color and composition of the shots in those tight quarters -- particularly upon approaching the first destroyer when we get the first real glimpse of the interior prepped for war -- it is both haunting and beautiful.

Jurgen Prochnow delivers the most believable performance of a ship captain I've ever seen on film. All the emotions register on his face--his concern for his own life, ship, and crew; his hatred for the decisions he's forced to make; the disbelieving joy of beating the overwhelming odds--while simultaneously holding it back so the crew sees a strong unmoving man forever in control of the situation. His performance is, in a word, brilliant.

The rest of the cast also delivers amazingly believable performances, and trust me, I could write an entire review on the film's characters and their portrayals. It's both disappointing and satisfying that I'm not given enough space to do so (I wish I could state that about a tenth of the films I've reviewed here on IMDb.) I liked the entire crew of this U-boat, the war correspondent and his character arc as he realizes the truth behind these "heroes", the chief and his longing to return to his wife, Johann and the story of his redemption--all well cast, well acted, and believable.

Another aspect I adored about Das Boot - the controversial scenes simply rolled by with no more or less emphasis than any other statement the film makes. In fact, I saw the film before really reading anything or researching it and found myself somewhat shocked to hear about these "talked about" scenes. Granted, the film does pose some moral questions, but I felt the film handled it with grace and great subtlety, showing what it needs to get the point across and not a step further . . . unlike typical Hollywood where controversy gets bold print, italics, and a highlighter. Maybe I should move to Germany.

I can go on for a long while: Over three hours of wonderful visuals and strong performances, a sparse but great score (this film's lack of music is quite appropriate, making the presence of music much more impactful in its key places). Realistic writing from people who lived the experience first hand. As I said, I can go on for awhile but I'll sum it up and end this review with one statement: Das Boot is the definitive submarine movie.


390 of 410 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Overblown and overrated piotr2009
Did you watch it in English, or in German with subtitles? motleycruefan
On Military Channel - mis-pronouncing the name csc115
Please help: Point of the 'Coup de Grace' suse33
Beer drinking while on duty? bagherib
Who pitied German crew and characters in this movie ? merdiolu
Discuss Das Boot (1981) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?