73 user 44 critic

Christiane F. (1981)

Christiane F. - Wir Kinder vom Bahnhof Zoo (original title)
This movie portrays the drug scene in Berlin in the 1970s, following tape recordings of Christiane F. 14-year-old Christiane lives with her mother and little sister in a typical multi-story... See full summary »


Uli Edel (as Ulrich Edel)


Uli Edel (additional writer), Kai Hermann (book) | 2 more credits »

On Disc

at Amazon

2 wins. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Eberhard Auriga Eberhard Auriga ... Alter Fixer
Natja Brunckhorst ... Christiane
Peggy Bussieck Peggy Bussieck ... Puppi
Lothar Chamski Lothar Chamski ... Rolf
Rainer Woelk Rainer Woelk ... Leiche (as Rainer Wölk)
Uwe Diderich Uwe Diderich ... Klaus
Jan Georg Effler Jan Georg Effler ... Bernd
Ellen Esser Ellen Esser ... Kessis Mutter
Andreas Fuhrmann Andreas Fuhrmann ... Atze
Thomas Haustein Thomas Haustein ... Detlev
Lutz Hemmerling Lutz Hemmerling ... Bienenstich
Daniela Jaeger Daniela Jaeger ... Kessi
Bernhard Janson Bernhard Janson ... Milan
Jens Kuphal Jens Kuphal ... Axel
Christiane Lechle Christiane Lechle ... Christianes Mutter


This movie portrays the drug scene in Berlin in the 1970s, following tape recordings of Christiane F. 14-year-old Christiane lives with her mother and little sister in a typical multi-story apartment building in Berlin. She's fascinated by 'The Sound', a new disco with the most modern equipment. Although legally she's too young, she asks a friend to take her. There, she meets Detlef, who's in a clique where everybody's on drugs. Step by step she gets drawn deeper into the scene. Written by Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


You'll never forget her... See more »


Biography | Drama


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »



West Germany



Release Date:

2 April 1981 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Christiane F. See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA See more »


Box Office


DEM 4,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


| (cut)

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


The movie featured the music of David Bowie who even appeared in the film in concert sequences. His involvement with the picture helped its awareness and box-office. Nearly all the songs on the film's soundtrack were written or co-written by Bowie. According to the film's source book, Christiane F. in real life had had her first experience with heroin at a Bowie concert and this fact was reiterated as a story element in the film. See more »


After Christiane meets two friends inside of the Zoo station building, all three leave through a door looking for Detlef (Christiane's boyfriend) where the male prostitutes stand in line. One of her friends (Axel) wears flares-type light blue jeans inside the station, but outside he suddenly wears slim-fit dark blue jeans. See more »

Crazy Credits

"The Production likes to thank the 'Sound'-Team and determines the fact, that the 'Sound' has developed to be one of the most interesting youth-meeting points in the world. The drug-scene, as shown in the picture is not identical with that one in present." See more »

Alternate Versions

For its UK theatrical release the film was cut by 12 secs by the BBFC, though video versions were much heavier cut by over 5 minutes with all of the edits made to scenes showing the preparation and injection of heroin. The cuts were fully waived in 2000 for all video and DVD releases. See more »


Referenced in Ban the Sadist Videos! Part 2 (2006) See more »


V2 Schneider
Written by David Bowie
RCA Records
Courtesy Rolf-Budde-Verlag, Berlin
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Emotionally draining, but real and important
17 January 2015 | by atlihafsteinssonSee all my reviews

We don't hear as much about drug addiction now. Sadly, it seems to have become accepted more in the collective conscious of society, and I think that's a very bad development. Drugs and drug addiction continue to pull unwitting people into their web, often permanently. This movie, "Christane F.", is an exceptional movie on the horrors of drug addiction. A key part of that is having the human side of the issue in clear focus all the time.

Christiane is a bored, aimless teenager in West Berlin in the 70s. I remember what it was like being a teenager. Suddenly, the comfort of being a kid was taken from you, and you were exposed to the real world and all of its difficult realities. That's enough to make anyone jaded, and there is nothing for Christiane to do in the boring apartment neighbourhood where she lives. She escapes her day-to-day life through the music of her idol, David Bowie. Desperate to feel alive, she has her eye on a new disco called The Sound. Even though too young to enter, she gets her friend to take her. But this new disco turns out to be a seedy teen hangout full of drugs and dealers. Christiane meets a guy there and falls in love with him. She'll do anything to keep this positive new influence in her life - even if that means sink into the world of drugs that he's slowly sinking into.

This film hits close to home because of how utterly real it feels. You even come to understand, if not agree with, why Christiane chooses her path. After she falls in with her new clique of friends, there is an exhilarating scene of them running around Berlin, aimlessly and high on their freedom. David Bowie's "Heroes" plays throughout. These kids desperately want to escape their dark and dreary realities. Too bad that they end up choosing a means of escape that plunges them into an even darker reality. Frighteningly, and humanly, the characters are fully aware of their addictions. They just can't find the spirit to do anything about it.

One particular scene is terrifying. Christiane and her boyfriend are locked in her mother's bedroom while cold turkey floods through them. The agony they project is quite hard to stomach, even when they're not coughing up blood. This drug destroys their lives, if not just their bodies, and while they know and want to escape their heroin addiction, their human insecurities make it difficult to do so. Slowly, indeed, they become less and less human in their constant search for the next fix.

The actors were astonishing, so utterly believable, showing talent way beyond their years. "Christiane F." is a frightening, sadly relevant movie about one of the darkest side-effects of society, and the deeply human turmoil that lands people there - often permanently. Fortunately, Christiane ultimately managed to escape her drug addiction, and hopefully this autobiographical story will keep other wayward kids from following her path.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 73 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

IMDb Freedive: Watch Movies and TV Series for Free

Watch Hollywood hits and TV favorites for free with IMDb Freedive. Start streaming on IMDb and Fire TV devices today!

Start watching

Stream Trending TV Series With Prime Video

Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial

Recently Viewed