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The Good German
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The Good German (2006) More at IMDbPro »

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The Good German -- Set in post-war Berlin, frequent Soderbergh collaborator George Clooneyplays Jake Geismer, an American military journalist who has returned to Berlin for the Potsdam Peace Conference.
The Good German -- While in post-war Berlin to cover the Potsdam Conference, an American military journalist is drawn into a murder investigation which involves his former mistress and his driver.
The Good German -- Clip: You should have never come back to Berlin
The Good German -- Interview: Cate Blanchett "The Film's Location"
The Good German -- While in post-war Berlin to cover the Potsdam Conference, an American military journalist is drawn into a murder investigation which involves his former mistress and his driver.


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6.1/10   20,890 votes »
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Popularity: ?
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Writers (WGA):
Paul Attanasio (screenplay)
Joseph Kanon (novel)
View company contact information for The Good German on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
19 January 2007 (USA) See more »
If war is hell then what comes after? See more »
While in post-war Berlin to cover the Potsdam Conference, an American military journalist is drawn into a murder investigation which involves his former mistress and his driver. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Nominated for Oscar. Another 4 wins & 3 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
Still interesting, if over-ambitious See more (173 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

George Clooney ... Jake Geismer

Cate Blanchett ... Lena Brandt

Tobey Maguire ... Tully

Beau Bridges ... Colonel Muller

Tony Curran ... Danny

Leland Orser ... Bernie

Jack Thompson ... Congressman Breimer

Robin Weigert ... Hannelore

Ravil Isyanov ... General Sikorsky

Christian Oliver ... Emil Brandt

Dave Power ... Lieutenant Schaeffer

Don Pugsley ... Gunther

Dominic Comperatore ... Levi

John Roeder ... General

J. Paul Boehmer ... British Press Aide

Igor Korosec ... Russian Soldier

Boris Kievsky ... Russian Soldier
Vladimir Kulikov ... Russian Soldier
Yevgeniy Narovlyanskiy ... Russian Soldier

Aleksandr Sountsov ... Russian Soldier
Dean Misch ... German Boy
Justin Misch ... German Boy
Tom Cummins ... British Interviewer

Brandon Keener ... Clerk

Gian Franco Tordi ... The Butcher (as Gianfranco L'Amore Tordi)

David Willis ... Franz Bettmann
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Michael Bravo ... Full Colonel (uncredited)
Alexandra Carter ... German Woman (uncredited)

Paul Edney ... WWII U.S. Army Officer (uncredited)

Megan Evanich ... Dancer (uncredited)

David Freer ... Russian Solider (uncredited)

Alec Gray ... German Boy (uncredited)
Zvonimir Hace ... Russian Soldier (uncredited)
Garth R. Hassell ... French Soldier (uncredited)
Thomas Hogeland ... Political Aid (uncredited)
Ian Novotny ... Russian Soldier (uncredited)

Spiro Papas ... Russian Soldier (uncredited)

Patrick Tatten ... Political Attache (uncredited)

Stephen Wheeler ... Russian Military Police Officer (uncredited)

Directed by
Steven Soderbergh 
Writing credits
Paul Attanasio (screenplay)

Joseph Kanon (novel)

Produced by
Frederic W. Brost .... executive producer
Ben Cosgrove .... producer
Gregory Jacobs .... producer
Ben Waisbren .... executive producer (as Benjamin Waisbren)
Original Music by
Thomas Newman 
Cinematography by
Steven Soderbergh  (as Peter Andrews)
Film Editing by
Steven Soderbergh  (as Mary Ann Bernard)
Casting by
Debra Zane 
Production Design by
Philip Messina 
Art Direction by
Doug J. Meerdink  (as Doug Meerdink)
Set Decoration by
Kristen Toscano Messina 
Costume Design by
Louise Frogley 
Makeup Department
Fríða Aradóttir .... key hair stylist (as Frida S. Aradottir)
Rita Bellissimo .... additional hair stylist
Marina Hart .... key hair stylist
Zoe Hay .... additional makeup artist
Julie Hewett .... makeup department head
Julie Kristy .... additional makeup artist
Emanuel Millar .... hair stylist: Ms. Blanchett
Margarita Pidgeon .... third hair stylist
Arturo Rojas .... additional hair stylist
Waldo Sanchez .... hair department head
Heba Thorisdottir .... makeup artist: Ms. Blanchett
Michelle Vittone .... key makeup artist (as Michelle Vittone-McNeil)
Production Management
Frederic W. Brost .... unit production manager
Monica De Armond .... post-production supervisor (as Monica De Armond Borde)
Robin Le Chanu .... production supervisor
Mark Scoon .... executive in charge of production
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Trey Batchelor .... second assistant director
Gregory Jacobs .... first assistant director
Jessica Lowrey .... dga trainee
Jody Spilkoman .... second second assistant director
Basti Van Der Woude .... additional second assistant director
David Pinkus .... second assistant director: additional photography UK (uncredited)
Art Department
Tom Altobello .... prop assistant (as Tommy Altobello)
Rich Andrade .... set dresser (as Richard Andrade)
Rich Andrade .... set dresser
C. Scott Baker .... set designer
Adam L. Barker .... head plaster foreman
Scott Bobbitt .... leadman
Travis Bobbitt .... prop assistant
Mike Bomar .... paint foreman
Steve Borgese .... greens coordinator
Shane Buckallew .... plaster gang boss
John Bullard .... welder
Karen E. Burnett .... set dresser
Ryan P. Dreyer .... set dresser
Mariano Fernandez .... welder gangboss
Gerard Forrest .... location foreman
Hank Giardina .... paint supervisor
William Gideon .... general foreman
Wylie Griffin .... art department coordinator (as Wylie Young Griffin)
Helen Kozora .... buyer (as Helen Kozora-Tell)
Bud Kucia .... head welding foreman
William J. Law III .... set designer (as W.M. Law III)
Scott Lodwig .... labor foreman
Gregory Lynch Jr. .... carpenter
Merdyce McClaran .... set dresser
Maureen McGuire .... prop assistant
Robin L. Miller .... property master
John Moore .... propmaker foreman
John Moore .... purchaser
Eric Nelson .... plaster foreman
Erik Norville .... on-set dresser
Jim Paniagua .... foreman
Jim Paniagua .... toolman
Eric Ramirez .... set dresser
Dennis Richardson .... propmaker foreman
Miles S. Richman .... gang boss
John Risso .... paint gang boss
Micah Roehr .... carpenter
Neil Rust .... paint foreman
Richard Sarabia .... labor foreman
Robert Sica .... set dresser
Easton Michael Smith .... assistant art director (as Easton Smith)
Chris Snyder .... construction coordinator
Dale Snyder .... propmaker foreman
Ryan Steffen .... set dresser
James Stephenson .... propmaker foreman (as James L. Stephenson)
Jim Stubblefield .... assistant property master (as D. James Stubblefield)
David Tye .... lead sculptor
Alex Valenzuela .... construction laborer
Yvonne von Wallenberg .... consultant
Suzan Wexler .... assistant art director
Frank White .... welder gangboss
Jack White .... food stylist
Helen Wilson .... props
Ben Woodworth .... painter
Curtis Yackel .... propmaker foreman
Chris Zimmerman .... stand-by painter
Jonathan Boda .... propmaker (uncredited)
Henning Brehm .... graphic artist (uncredited)
Ryan Galiher .... set dresser (uncredited)
Kent Jones .... painter (uncredited)
Eric P. Paczkowski .... set dresser (uncredited)
Heidi Roller .... art department assistant (uncredited)
Lee Ross .... on-set scenic (uncredited)
Fante Zamora .... set dresser (uncredited)
Sound Department
David Betancourt .... foley mixer
Larry Blake .... sound re-recording mixer
Larry Blake .... supervising sound editor
Derek Casari .... foley engineer
Dawn Fintor .... foley artist
Randall L. Johnson .... boom operator (as Randy Johnson)
Paul Ledford .... production sound mixer
Ross Levy .... utility sound technician
Kimaree Long .... dialogue editor
Aileen Maquiraya .... audio post-conform
Sterling Moore .... utility sound: additional photography
Alicia Stevenson .... foley artist
Billy Theriot .... assistant sound editor
Special Effects by
Chris Bailey .... special effects
Michael Carroll .... head model maker
Mike Carroll .... head model maker (as Michael Carroll)
Blair Foord .... on-set coordinator
Blair Foord .... special effects technician
Werner Hahnlein .... special effects general foreman
Kevin Hannigan .... special effects coordinator
Eric Mingebach .... special effects technician (as Erich Mingenbach)
Michael Roundy .... special effects foreman (as Michael D. Roundy)
Ken Tarallo .... special effects technician
Vaughn Williams .... special effects technician
Visual Effects by
Ron Barr .... opticals
Melissa Brockman .... visual effects producer
Tom Daws .... digital artist: CIS Hollywood
Bill Gilman .... digital artist: CIS Hollywood
Lyndal Heathwood .... paint/roto artist
Heather Elisa Hill .... visual effects coordinator: CIS Hollywood
Dan Levitan .... compositing supervisor: CIS Hollywood
Gregory Oehler .... digital artist: CIS Hollywood (as Greg Oehler)
David Rey .... compositing supervisor: CIS Hollywood
Chris Ryan .... digital artist: CIS Hollywood (as Christopher Ryan)
Marc-Andre Samson .... matte painter
Thomas J. Smith .... visual effects supervisor
Robert Stromberg .... matte painting supervisor: CIS Hollywood
Wilson Tang .... digital restoration
Ed Twiford .... digital film colorist
Chris B. Schnitzer .... director of visual effects: Warner Bros. (uncredited)
Brian Avery .... stunts
Joni Avery .... stunts
Matt Baker .... stunts
Jeff Brockton .... stunts (as Jeffrey Brockton)
Jodi Lyn Brockton .... stunts (as Jodi Brockton)
Hal Burton .... stunts
Chad Cleven .... stunts
Eliza Coleman .... stunts
David D. Darling .... stunts
Jeremy Fitzgerald .... stunts
Mickey Giacomazzi .... stunts
Sean Graham .... stunts
Tabby Hanson .... stunts (as Tabby Hanson Graham)
Jimmy Hart .... stunts (as Jim Hart)
Gene Hartline .... stunts
John Moio .... stunts
Eric Norris .... stunts
Carrick O'Quinn .... stunts
Vladimir Orlov .... stunts
Michael Owen .... stunts (as Michael P. Owen)
Jeff Ramsey .... stunts
John Robotham .... stunt coordinator
Jason Rodriguez .... stunts
Bill Willens .... stunts
Jeff Brockton .... stunt double: George Clooney (uncredited)
P. David Miller .... specialist driver (uncredited)
David Saxa .... stunt double: US soldier (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Joseph Ayer .... lighting technician
Russell Ayer .... lighting technician
Dana Baker .... best boy
Kent Baker .... rigging key grip
Jose F. Barrios .... rigging grip
Christopher Bateman .... rigging technician
Erik Bernstein .... lighting technician
Luciano Blotta .... video assistant operator
Massimo Bordonaro .... ad/pub services
Glenn Brown .... additional first assistant camera (as Glen Brown)
Jose Danner .... rigging grip
R. Michael De Chellis .... rigging gaffer
Steven Frohardt .... rigging best boy
Raymond Gonzales .... assistant chief lighting technician (as Raymond A. Gonzales)
Melinda Sue Gordon .... still photographer
Joe Hill .... rigging grip
Tom Jordan .... second assistant camera: "a" camera
Ulrike Lamster .... camera loader
Al LaVerde .... key grip (as Al La Verde)
Jonathan Leary .... company grip
Chris Lombardi .... camera operator (as Cris Lombardi)
Ted Marshall .... rigging best boy
Niles McElroy .... lighting technician
Steven Meizler .... first assistant camera: "a" camera
James Plannette .... chief lighting technician (as Jim Plannette)
Eric Sagot .... lighting technician
Michael Seaman .... rigging technician
Richie Stanford .... rigging technician
Jason Talbert .... company grip
Paul Threlkeld .... dolly grip
Paul Toomey .... film loader
Ryan Vanlossberg .... company grip (as Ryan Von Lossberg)
Mark James Watson .... rigging technician
Bob Myers .... rigging grip (uncredited)
Casting Department
Rich King .... extras casting
Jeremy Rich .... casting associate
Tannis Vallely .... casting associate
Kean Cronin .... extras casting (uncredited)
Kelly Hunt .... extras casting (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Shandra Beri .... set costumer
Tom Cummins .... costumer
Lynda Foote .... costume supervisor
Monica Haynes .... costumer (as Monica S. Haynes)
Mary Etta Lang .... costume textile artist
Dennis McCarthy .... key costumer
Jason M. Moore .... set costumer
Garet Reilly .... key costumer (as Garet Reilly Batchelor)
Kenn Smiley .... key costumer
Reese Spensley .... costumer (as James L. Spensley)
Editorial Department
Matt Absher .... second assistant editor
Ron Barr .... digital conform
Scott M. Davids .... assistant editor: pre-production
David Kirchner .... first assistant editor
Gregg Schaublin .... digital intermediate producer
Ed Twiford .... dailies colorist
Ryan Piers Williams .... post-production assistant
Music Department
Bill Bernstein .... music editor
George Doering .... musician
Greg Hayes .... assistant engineer
Robert Hurst .... musician
Tim Lauber .... assistant engineer
Norman Ludwin .... musician (bass)
Larry Mah .... digital audio
Thomas Pasatieri .... orchestration
Tim Rodier .... music preparation
Armin Steiner .... music scoring mixer
Thomas Vicari .... music scoring mixer (as Tommy Vicari)
Michael Zainer .... assistant music editor
Transportation Department
Pat Carmen .... driver
Doreen L. Carpenter .... transportation dispatcher
Jon Carpenter .... transportation coordinator
Danny Coughlin .... driver
Bernard Glavin .... transportation captain
David Glavin .... driver
Diane Glavin .... driver
Billy Grace .... driver (as William Grace)
Shane Greedy .... transportation supervisor
Steve Lewis .... unit driver
Chance Robertson .... driver
Sarah Lynn Schmitt .... transportation
Lin C. Smith .... driver
Paul Tumber .... driver (as Paul E. Tumber)
Gordon Winkle .... driver
Gina August .... driver (uncredited)
Brita McCollough .... construction driver (uncredited)
Vicki Sousa .... driver (uncredited)
Other crew
Dan Addelson .... set production assistant (as Daniel Addelson)
Mir Bahmanyar .... dialogue coach: German
Mir Bahmanyar .... military consultant
Gary Barber .... pilot: Curtis C-46 Commando
Daniel Benson .... technical advisor: military parade (as Dan Benson)
Ali Blacker .... assistant: Mr. Cosgrove
Joanna Bush .... production archivist
Josh Carlock .... production office assistant
Monica De Armond .... assistant: Mr. Soderbergh (as Monica De Armond Borde)
Jessica Drake .... dialect coach: pre-production
Justin Duncan .... assistant location manager
Laura Dunlop .... choreographer
Brian D. Fox .... marketing
Chrissy Gilmartin .... set production assistant
Lynn Givens .... choreographer
Dara Gordon .... assistant: Mr. Maguire
Manuela Hahnlein .... staff assistant
Quentin Halliday .... location manager
Weston Scott Higgins .... technical advisor: military parade
Hannah M. Hinkel .... key second assistant accountant
Jason Hinkel .... first assistant accountant
Marisol Jiménez .... construction accountant
Fallon Johnson .... set production assistant
Alexander Kandaurov .... archivist
Jemma Kearney .... assistant: Ms. Blanchett
Kate Kelly .... production coordinator
Michael LaCorte .... assistant production coordinator
Ken Lavet .... location manager
Keri Littledeer .... medic
Sonya Lunsford .... production accountant
Lance Mancuso .... unit medic
Lynne Martin .... set production assistant
Angel McConnell .... assistant: Mr. Clooney
Jen McGowan .... production office assistant
Tom Minder .... technical advisor: military parade
Tim Monich .... dialect coach: Ms. Blanchett
David Moreau .... staff assistant
Guy Morrison .... key assistant location manager
Gene O'Neal .... flight engineer: Curtis C-46 Commando
Mark Palmer .... craft service
Kate Powell .... staff assistant
Kenn Rabin .... archivist
Heidi Roller .... staff assistant
Joanie Selden .... payroll accountant
Leith Smith .... pilot: Curtis C-46 Commando
Bryan Snodgrass .... set production assistant
Sabrina Somma .... additional medic
Melissa St. Onge .... assistant: Mr. Maguire
Jack Stern .... studio teacher
Spooky Stevens .... unit publicist
Cindy Taylor .... set production assistant (as Cindy A. Taylor)
Quay Terry .... technical advisor: military parade
Dick Troy .... maintenance officer: Curtis C-46 Commando
Yvonne von Wallenberg .... consultant: German research (as Yvonne Von Wallenberg)
Annie Welles .... script supervisor
Ryan Piers Williams .... staff assistant
T.C. Williams .... mold shop supervisor
Jeff Winn .... craft service
Brian Worsley .... production secretary
Chad Cleven .... stand-in: Mr. Maguire (uncredited)
Tiffany McFarland .... stand-in: Ms. Blanchett (uncredited)
Josh Mills .... stand-in (uncredited)
Steve Reese .... production assistant (uncredited)
Michael Serrano .... production assistant (uncredited)
Jennifer Sims .... stand-in (uncredited)
Patty Tobin .... stand-in: Ms. Blanchett (uncredited)

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Rated R for language, violence and some sexual content
105 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.66 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Argentina:13 | Australia:MA | Brazil:16 | Canada:14A (Canadian Home Video rating) | Finland:K-15 | Germany:12 | Ireland:15A | Netherlands:12 | Norway:15 | Portugal:M/12 (Qualidade) | Singapore:NC-16 | South Korea:18 | Sweden:11 | Switzerland:12 (canton of Geneva) | Switzerland:12 (canton of Vaud) | UK:15 | USA:R (No. 42615)
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Cate Blanchett studied Marlene Dietrich and Ingrid Bergman in order to play a German character. Ingrid Bergman, however, was Swedish.See more »
Factual errors: The newsreel speaker says the Potsdam conference takes place in "Emperor William's former palace". This is not correct. The Cecilienhof palace was built for the last crown prince of Germany, who lived there from 1917-19 and from 1926-45.See more »
Bernie Teitel:They want me to decide who the ardent Nazis were. Truth is, it was the whole country. Nobody's hands are clean.See more »
Movie Connections:
You're Some Pretty DollSee more »


Is this movie based on a true story?
See more »
21 out of 27 people found the following review useful.
Still interesting, if over-ambitious, 9 April 2007
Author: Chris_Docker from United Kingdom

In true noir-ish fashion, much of the intrigue with The Good German is about to whom, and why, the title applies. For a film that has so much devotion to being a 40s recreation or homage, and in spite of another mesmerising performance from the very talented Cate Blanchett, it is also a mystery as to why it is not more of a runaway success.

Employing the grainy black-and-white look of Good Night and Good Luck, only more so, The Good German is a formal exercise in original 40s technique. It uses as its subject 1945 Berlin and the nightmare scenarios of post-war safety. Blanchett plays Lena Brandt, a Jewish German, who attributes her amazing survival to being the ex-wife of an SS man. (She claims he is dead, by the way). Her boyfriend is the violent and abusive Patrick Tully, engagingly played by Tobey Maguire. But haunting her life is also good-guy George Clooney, in the shape of US Captain Jake Geismer. They go back a long way. In more than one sense, to put it delicately. He is disturbed to see her turning tricks as much as he is to see her hanging out with a low-life like Tully.

Lena wants to get out of Berlin, but that is easier said than done. Our film is awash with intrigues as everyone individually tries to help her, but everyone also schemes against each other. Who is a war criminal and who is just an ordinary German? Understandably, no-one wants to be caught with their pants down, and everybody is in Lena's.

Lena herself plays her cards very close to her chest. She only reveals her hand towards the end. As she takes over centre-stage, her story provides some tension and emotional ballast to a plot that is otherwise a bit lifeless. Disappointingly, the usually capable Clooney is the weak link in the acting. His usually charismatically chirpy, cheeky style seems anachronistic and makes him look both typecast and mis-cast. The part could have been written for Humphrey Bogart. There and many thematic and visual references to Casablanca. But Clooney's lack of gravitas highlights the film's stylistic weakness. The Good German is ponderous without conveying a seriousness of the subject matter and so ends up just seeming self-important.

Beautiful noir-ish chiaroscuro lighting is a delicious hearkening back to more substantial classics of old. But, with the exception of Lena, the characters lack the moral ambiguity that was so characteristic of such films. Jake mentions, "the good old days - when you could tell who was the bad guy by who was shooting at you." But, although the line could have come out of the mouth of Bogart, it refers to a period and style of film-making that is a world away from what this tries to be.

Lena (Cate Blanchett) is a mystery, and the film is worth seeing for this magnificent, towering performance, that is also a study in emotional complexity. Long-suffering, she oozes oceans of repressed emotion in a way to make Ingrid Bergman proud. Although more complex than female protagonists of 40s movies, she is still the most successful part of the whole homage.

The story does have a little more subtlety than one might have expected, but I find it hard to imagine vast audiences wading through it joyfully until the pace eventually picks up enough to warrant serious interest. It's good to see the usually very capable Steven Soderbergh directing serious cinema again (instead of his Ocean's Eleven romps) but this over-ambitious project doesn't quite cut it. See it if you're a fan of Blanchett, or if you enjoy seeing Clooney getting beaten up.

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