A tale based on the life of Wilhelm Furtwangler, the controversial conductor of the Berlin Philharmonic whose tenure coincided with the controversial Nazi era. One of the most spectacular ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(play), (screenplay)

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Video

9 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Hanussen (1988)
Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A man's story parallels Hitler's rise. Austrian Klaus Schneider, wounded in World War I, recovers in the care of Dr. Emil Bettleheim. Bettleheim discovers that Schneider possesses powers of... See full summary »

Director: István Szabó
Stars: Klaus Maria Brandauer, Erland Josephson, Ildikó Bánsági
Mephisto (1981)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A German stage actor finds unexpected success and mixed blessings in the popularity of his performance in a Faustian play as the Nazis take power in pre-WWII Germany. As his associates and ... See full summary »

Director: István Szabó
Stars: Klaus Maria Brandauer, Krystyna Janda, Ildikó Bánsági
Sunshine (1999)
Drama | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

The fate of a Hungarian Jewish family throughout the 20th century.

Director: István Szabó
Stars: Ralph Fiennes, Rosemary Harris, Rachel Weisz
Colonel Redl (1985)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Set during the fading glory of the Austro-Hungarian empire, the film tells of the rise and fall of Alfred Redl (Brandauer), an ambitious young officer who proceeds up the ladder to become ... See full summary »

Director: István Szabó
Stars: Klaus Maria Brandauer, Hans Christian Blech, Armin Mueller-Stahl
Being Julia (2004)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Set in '30s London, the film involves stage actors and their experiences with love and revenge.

Director: István Szabó
Stars: Annette Bening, Michael Gambon, Maury Chaykin
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Mail for translation. A haboru vegen a folyoparton felboritva fekszik egy sarga villamos. Elgyotort, rongyos, otthontalan emberek verodnek ossze egy csapatba, sinre ... See full summary »

Director: István Szabó
Stars: Ági Mészáros, Maja Komorowska, Franciszek Pieczka
Meeting Venus (1991)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A deliciously biting satire about both the world of Grand Opera and United Europe. A Hungarian conductor (Arestrup) attempts to mount a bold new production of Richard Wagner's "Tannhäuser" ... See full summary »

Director: István Szabó
Stars: Glenn Close, Niels Arestrup, Kiri Te Kanawa
The Door I (2012)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A novelist forms a strange bond with her eccentric maid that will have a lasting effect on both women.

Director: István Szabó
Stars: Helen Mirren, Martina Gedeck, Károly Eperjes
Aberdeen (2000)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Kaisa is a Scot, a successful London lawyer, who snorts coke and has one-night stands with strangers. Her mother calls from Aberdeen with some story begging her to fly to Norway and collect... See full summary »

Director: Hans Petter Moland
Stars: Stellan Skarsgård, Lena Headey, Jean Anderson
Lovefilm (1970)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Jansci reminiscences about Kata his childhood friend in pre-WWII Budapest, They are separated as a result of WWII. Reunited as adults, they struggle with whether they will stay in each others lives.

Director: István Szabó
Stars: Judit Halász, András Bálint, Edit Kelemen
Rokonok (2006)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

Young honest public official is sworn in after his predecessor had to leave due to a corruption scandal. Soon, the young idealist discovers just how far-reaching the corruption is in his town and how easy it is to become corrupt yourself.

Director: István Szabó
Stars: Sándor Csányi, Ildikó Tóth, Károly Eperjes
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

The story shows Emma's and Böbe's fight for survival, for keeping their position in society which they achieved with hard work in the previous regime. They don't want to lose their place and become village girls again.

Director: István Szabó
Stars: Johanna ter Steege, Enikö Börcsök, Péter Andorai
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Lt. David Wills
Birgit Minichmayr ...
Emmi Straube
...
Helmut Alfred Rode, 2nd violinist
Oleg Tabakov ...
Colonel Dymshitz
Hanns Zischler ...
Rudolf Otto Werner, oboist
...
Schlee, timpanist
...
August Zirner ...
Captain Ed Martin
Daniel White ...
Sergeant Adams
Thomas Thieme ...
Reichsminister
...
Colonel Green
...
Major Richards
Robin Renucci ...
Captain Vernay
Edit

Storyline

A tale based on the life of Wilhelm Furtwangler, the controversial conductor of the Berlin Philharmonic whose tenure coincided with the controversial Nazi era. One of the most spectacular and renowned conductors of the 30s, Furtwangler's reputation rivaled that of Toscanini's. After the war, he was investigated as part of the Allies' de-Nazification programme. In the bombed-out Berlin of the immediate post-war period, the Allies slowly bring law and order--and justice--to bear on an occupied Germany. An American major is given the Furtwangler file, and is told to find everything he can and to prosecute the man ruthlessly. Tough and hard-nosed, Major Steve Arnold sets out to investigate a world of which he knows nothing. Orchestra members vouch for Furtwangler's morality--he did what he could to protect Jewish players from his orchestra. To the Germans, deeply respectful of their musical heritage, Furtwangler was a demigod; to Major Arnold, he is just a lying, weak-willed Nazi. Written by Sujit R. Varma

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Music | War

Certificate:

See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

| | |

Language:

| | |

Release Date:

7 March 2002 (Germany)  »

Also Known As:

A torto o a ragione  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$22,051 (USA) (5 September 2003)

Gross:

$188,952 (USA) (12 March 2004)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (TV)

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Goofs

When Major Arnold is listening to the recording of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony, the record finishes the first movement and carries straight on to the second. Long playing albums, which ran at 33 1/3 rpm, were introduced in 1948, but the record shown is a 78 rpm one. The performance of the 5th Symphony would have been on a set of five 78 rpm records, one movement each, split over the two sides. It should not be possible for the second movement to start without the record being changed. See more »

Connections

Edited into Taking Sides Again (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

1ST & 4TH MOVEMENTS
(from SYMPHONY NO.5 C MINOR, OP.67)
Music by Ludwig van Beethoven
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
thought provoking story, delicate showmanship and excellent acting
27 July 2002 | by (Budapest, HUNGARY) – See all my reviews

Art vs. politics; the ethical dilemmas of talented artists when politics approaches them; this has always been István Szabó's favourite topic. Already the Oscar-winner Mephisto featured a talented actor selling his soul to the Nazis. This time the story is based on real-life events: while most of his colleagues fled the country, Wilhelm Furtwängler, this truly exceptional conductor stayed in Germany during the Nazi era and continued his career with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. His "collaboration" provoked strong accusations after the war.

The film is the story of the investigation by the American post-war authorities to decide whether the accusations of collaboration are valid. The film presents two ethical answers. The first one is stated by the American officer (played excellently by Harvey Keitel), who believes that Furtwängler is morally guilty, as he accepted a shining career from the Nazi's hand. The second answer is presented by Furtwängler himself who tries to defend himself by stating that in order to help (by "help" he both meant practical assistance - as he did save many Jews during the war - and a spiritual message - as he claimed that his music maintained the inner good in his nation's soul even in the time of Evil) he had to compromise with the Nazis, but he never really collaborated with them. The film itself (despite its title) does not take side, although it seems to sympathize with Furtwängler as an artist and generally presents the American officer as an ignorant and illiterate person. However, as the investigation proceeds, this aggressive and obnoxious person asks questions that are very hard to answer: is it acceptable to make such a compromise with a regime that kills 6 million Jews? Is it really so that Furtwängler made the compromise with the idea of helping people in need? Or rather, did he make it to advance his career?

The film has triggered exciting conversations with my friends who have differing opinions. I think these lengthy talks are the best proof that this is an excellent film and it has achieved its aim.

The story has several layers (I particularly liked the way differences of American and German cultures are presented), the characters are exciting and well played: if you like thought-provoking movies, go for this one!


34 of 35 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
music in this movie zizimouse
Taking Sides Ell-4
Church location paulthompson
Only just watched this origamiuk
Discuss Taking Sides (2001) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?