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Die Welle
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The Wave (2008) More at IMDbPro »Die Welle (original title)

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Ron Jones (short story and original protocols)
Johnny Dawkins (screenplay) ...
View company contact information for The Wave on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
27 May 2011 (USA) See more »
A high school teacher's experiment to demonstrate to his students what life is like under a dictatorship spins horribly out of control when he forms a social unit with a life of its own. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
8 wins & 8 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
A Clever, Ironic Account of Fascist Autocracy See more (96 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Jürgen Vogel ... Rainer Wenger

Frederick Lau ... Tim Stoltefuss

Max Riemelt ... Marco

Jennifer Ulrich ... Karo
Christiane Paul ... Anke Wenger
Jacob Matschenz ... Dennis
Cristina do Rego ... Lisa

Elyas M'Barek ... Sinan
Maximilian Vollmar ... Bomber
Max Mauff ... Kevin (as Maximilian Mauff)
Ferdinand Schmidt-Modrow ... Ferdi
Tim Oliver Schultz ... Jens
Amelie Kiefer ... Mona
Fabian Preger ... Kaschi
Odine Johne ... Maja
Tino Mewes ... Schädel
Karoline Teska ... Miri
Marco Bretscher-Coschignano ... Dominik
Lennard Bertzbach ... Bommel
Thommy Schwimmer ... Maxwell (as Tommy Schwimmer)
Joseph M'Barek ... Thorben
Jaime Ferkic ... Bobby (as Jaime Kristo Ferkic)
Darvin Schmidt ... Leon
Leander Hagen ... Zecke
Lucas Hardt ... Kulle
Max Richter ... Faust (as Maxwell Richter)
Sophie Kurzke ... Freundin Jens
Liv Lisa Fries ... Laura
Lena Lutz ... Leyla
Hendrik Holler ... Marktverkäufer
Ilo Gansel ... Marktverkäuferin
Natascha Paulick ... Verkäuferin

Maren Kroymann ... Dr. Kohlhage
Teresa Harder ... Mutter Karo
Thomas Sarbacher ... Vater Karo
Hubert Mulzer ... Dieter Wieland
Alexander Held ... Vater Tim
Johanna Gastdorf ... Mutter Tim
Friederike Wagner ... Mutter Marco

Dennis Gansel ... Hängengebliebener
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Ron Jones ... Coffee Bar Visitor (uncredited)

Directed by
Dennis Gansel 
Writing credits
Ron Jones (short story and original protocols) (as William Ron Jones)

Johnny Dawkins (screenplay "The Wave") and
Ron Birnbach (screenplay "The Wave")

Dennis Gansel (writer) and
Peter Thorwarth (writer)

Produced by
Patty Barth .... line producer
Christian Becker .... producer
Antonio Exacoustos .... co-producer
David Groenewold .... co-producer
Franz Kraus .... co-producer
Nina Maag .... supervising producer
Martin Moszkowicz .... co-producer
Peter Schiller .... line producer
Anita Schneider .... consulting producer
Original Music by
Heiko Maile 
Cinematography by
Torsten Breuer 
Film Editing by
Ueli Christen 
Casting by
Franziska Aigner-Kuhn 
Uwe Bünker 
Production Design by
Knut Loewe 
Art Direction by
Petra Ringleb 
Set Decoration by
Tilman Lasch 
Costume Design by
Ivana Milos 
Makeup Department
Dörte Dobkowitz .... makeup artist
Franziska Dominick .... assistant makeup artist
Irina Tübbecke-Bechem .... makeup artist
Renate Wetzel-Wagner .... additional makeup artist
Mieke Willaert .... additional makeup artist
Production Management
Dierk Beck von Rohland .... post-production supervisor
Natalie Clausen .... unit manager
Ulrike Fauth .... production manager (as Uli Fauth)
Axel Vogelmann .... post-production supervisor
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Maika Bonner .... third assistant director
Hendrik Holler .... first assistant director
Hendrik Holler .... second unit director
Matthias Nerlich .... second assistant director
Art Department
Philipp Hübner .... property master
Sound Department
David Arnold .... adr recordist
Tomas Bastian .... adr editor
Christian Bischoff .... sound re-recording mixer
Hans-Jörg Bramm .... sound (as Hans Bramm)
Christian Bruckmair .... adr mixer
Tschangis Chahrokh .... sound re-recording mixer
Stephan Fandrych .... adr supervisor
Florian Fricke .... sound: second unit
Dana Hopfe .... adr production manager
Hadon Install .... boom operator
Mathias Maydl .... sound re-recordist
Henry Mayr .... sound project coordinator
Michael Mitra .... foley editor
Pierre Peters-Arnolds .... synchronisation
Jörn Poetzl .... foley artist
Alexander Saal .... supervising sound editor
Philipp Sellier .... foley recordist
Patrick Veigel .... sound mixer
Special Effects by
Michael Apling .... special effects office coordinator
Ronny Klost .... special effects technician
Adolf Wojtinek .... special effects
Visual Effects by
Christopher Chaber .... lustre operator
Willy Delgado .... film scanning
Geoffrey Grafwallner .... digital supervisor
Ulrich Hochleitner .... digital transferer
Kathie Klippe .... film recorder: ARRILASER (as Kathi Klippe)
Nina Knott .... digital intermediate producer
Traudl Nicholson .... digital colorist
Marco Ringler .... digital compositor
Hari Schernthaner .... lustre operator
Abraham Schneider .... visual effects supervisor
Ania Senckpiehl .... digital transferer
Sascha Stiller .... film recorder: ARRILASER
Steven Stueart .... film scanning
Rainer Werner .... stunt coordinator
Camera and Electrical Department
Johannes Burow .... video operator
Katharina Dießner .... second assistant camera
Fred Dombrowka .... gaffer
Christopher Durth .... electrician (as Christofer Durth)
Pip Hare .... second assistant camera
Arne Hartländer .... assistant grip
Thomas Hübener .... scorpio head operator
Sandro Kieburg .... electrician
Conny Klein .... still photographer
Daniel Kraus .... underwater assistant camera
Martin Leitsch .... second assistant camera
Andres Lizana Prado .... underwater camera operator
Frank Pawlowski .... electrician
Philip Reinhold .... second assistant camera
Axel Renner .... best boy
Bernd Schultz .... grip
Matthias Wrage .... assistant camera
Casting Department
Johanna Ragwitz .... extras casting
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Inga Kusche .... costume assistant
Anja Lafin .... additional costume
Anske Lipinski .... wardrobe
Natalia Riede .... wardrobe
Editorial Department
Sandra Aichinger .... color timer
Location Management
Mathias Braun .... location scout
Christian Dosch .... location manager
Philipp von Hoff .... location manager
Gernot Zeglien .... location scout
Music Department
Volker Hinkel .... musician: electric guitars
Pia Hoffmann .... music supervisor
Torsten Kamps .... electronic orchestrator
Matthias Raue .... musician: keyboards
Mathias Willvondseder .... musician: CS 80
Andre Winter .... programming
Transportation Department
Ralf Pitzius .... production driver
Miklas Wittmann .... cast & production driver
Other crew
Jan Birka .... script supervisor
Gabriele Friedel .... production coordinator
Darius Ghanai .... title designer
Angela Reedwisch .... key account manager

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Die Welle" - Germany (original title)
See more »
107 min
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

The students are repeating a play, in which only "The Wave" students have roles after Karo is fired. In this play, 'Der Besuch der alten Dame' by Friedrich Durenmatt, an old woman who was exiled from her village by her fellow inhabitants comes back after many years. Having lost her billionaire husband and inherited his wealth, she has her revenge by leading all the villagers to kill her former lover who didn't help her. One of the themes is the group action and how people lose their personalities in a group. This mirrors the teacher's experience, who lead people into acting and losing personalities.See more »
Continuity: The way the word "Autokratie" is written on the black board changes between shots.See more »
Rainer Wenger:You should just see how motivated they are.See more »
Movie Connections:
Featured in We Are the Night (2010)See more »
Rock 'n' Roll High SchoolSee more »


What song is played when...?
See more »
111 out of 147 people found the following review useful.
A Clever, Ironic Account of Fascist Autocracy, 25 February 2008
Author: sesmallz from United States

Die Welle (The Wave) is truly a brilliant tale that lures viewers into its cleverly developed plot just as Herr Wenger lures his unsuspecting students into a sense of fascism. When Wenger, an affable schoolteacher who seems to be rebellious towards traditional instruction, gets selected to teach a class on autocracy, he is upset. However, he soon devises a plan with which to teach the students a valuable lesson on the sheer dangers of fascism and the ease with which one can be lured into it.

His class starts out simple and nonthreatening. The students choose Wenger as their leader and are instructed to wear a uniform and create a name for themselves (the students choose Die Welle "The Wave"). But, this club slowly turns into a sort of fascist regime. The unsuspecting students think they are participating in some sort of fun club, but they are really being shown how easily impressionable people can be attracted by autocracy.

The biting irony of this film is that at the beginning of the autocracy class, Wenger touched on the subject of Hitler's reign, and the students almost instinctively spit out answers about how Germany would never fall into that trap again knowing what they know now. But, the children soon eat their words when they become members of a much less disturbing, yet frighteningly similar clique.

There is a glimmer of this fact when two students who aren't members of "The Wave" pick on a student who is. Two other members come to the rescue of the victim. Though many may view this as a positive aspect of this sort of togetherness, the point is that fascism has developed and can easily become corrupt.

I highly recommend this to any potential viewer who either holds the same views as the students at the beginning of the film or simply wants to be entertained by the ironic theme of the film (so long as you don't mind the subtitles).

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Meta confirmation of the movie's moral gravityplanx
Why was 'the wave' so bad? donquigleone
The teacher at the end (spoilers) mrbsays
Improbability of the ending Stormhierta
Closeup of Mr. Wenger's face at the movie's finale Friedrich von Glower
12 december 1979 karl_lanc
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