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Schlafes Bruder (1995)

In the beginning of the 19th century, Johannes Elias Alder is born in a small village in the Austrian mountains. While growing up he is considered strange by the other villagers and ... See full summary »

Director:

Joseph Vilsmaier

Writers:

Robert Schneider (novel), Robert Schneider (screenplay)
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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 6 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
André Eisermann ... Elias
Dana Vávrová ... Elsbeth
Ben Becker ... Peter
Jochen Nickel ... Köhler Michel
Jürgen Schornagel ... Kurat Benzer / Curate Benzer
Paulus Manker ... Oskar
Michaela Rosen Michaela Rosen ... Seffin
Peter Franke ... Seff
Detlef Bothe ... Lukas
Michael Mendl ... Nulf
Eva Mattes ... Nulfin
Angelika Bartsch Angelika Bartsch ... Burga
Lena Stolze Lena Stolze ... Oskarin
Heinz Emigholz ... Haintz
Regina Fritsch ... Hebamme / Midwife
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Storyline

In the beginning of the 19th century, Johannes Elias Alder is born in a small village in the Austrian mountains. While growing up he is considered strange by the other villagers and discovers his love of music, especially rebuilding and playing the organ at the village church. After experiencing an "acoustic wonder", his eye color changes and he can hear even the most subtle sounds. Elias falls in platonic love with Elsbeth, the sister of Peter, a neighbor's son, who has longstanding homosexual feelings towards Elias. After Elsbeth, out of frustration from Elias' not returning her love and instead being obsessed with music, chooses to be impregnated and marries someone else who lose love she had spurned for Elias. The village burns and most villagers, including Elsbeth, evacuate to the closest town. Elias remains behind. Having heard of "the prodigy in the alps", a music master seeks out Elias and invites him to an organ challenge in the town where the villagers relocated. Elias ... Written by Thomas Meyer <i03a@zfn.uni-bremen.de>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Wer liebt, schläft nicht.

Genres:

Drama | Music | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violent and disturbing images, and for some sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Sony Pictures Classics

Country:

Germany

Language:

German

Release Date:

13 September 1996 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Az álom testvére See more »

Filming Locations:

Bludenz, Vorarlberg, Austria See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Soundtracks

Komm O Tod, 'Du Schlafes Bruder'
From Choral No. 56 "Ich will den Kreuzstab gerne tragen"
by Johann Sebastian Bach
Recorded at
Arco Studios München
Cap à pie Studios Neutraubling
In the mountains of the Salzkammergut
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Brilliant.
21 December 2007 | by lotuslaluneSee all my reviews

To the person who said this film is not worth your time ... well, your "review" of the film is not worth the time of half the members of IMDb, but why should I be surprised when all I ever find on this website are people trying to outwit each other with their supposed intellectual superiority? The film is based on a book by Robert Schneider, who also wrote the screenplay. Having read both the book and seen the film, I think the film was a decent adaptation. As one review I read said, the director did seem to take a more stylistic and overall artistic angle on the story, and as such much of the finest material from the book was lost.

However, the film itself is still an excellent piece of work and stands on its own, aside from the book, as a remarkable movie. I'm not sure I noticed anything about "horrible sound effects", but I remember first seeing this film several years ago on Bravo late one night, and I could not get it out of my head for the next several YEARS ... until I discovered Amazon and was able to find an imported copy to purchase for my own. Only a year ago did I actually read the book, which was incredibly engrossing, and I encourage anyone who enjoyed the film to tackle the literary version as well.

The cinematography and the overwhelming metaphysical essence present in this film are what truly sucked me in. The story itself is simply beautiful in the same way that any tragedy, whether Greek or Shakespearean or whathaveyou, is captivatingly melancholy. It resonates within you and makes your heart ache for days afterward. Personally, I found the main character, Elias, to be the most fascinating element of the film. And of course, the scene in which he "opens the gates of heaven" with his sheer musical virtuosity is riveting to behold. This film is truly a delectable treat for the senses.

Anyone who is truly passionate about their talent or art will relate to the "tortured artist" persona that is Elias - the isolation, the dedication to your craft in spite of other desires which we cannot displace, and the embodiment of the emotional realm that so frequently serves as the origin of our inspiration ... this is what the story is truly about. If you can appreciate that, you will love this film.


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