In 1942, Friedrich Weimer's boxing skills get him an appointment to a National Political Academy (NaPolA) - high schools that produce Nazi elite. Over his father's objections, Friedrich enrolls, seeing this as his ticket out of factory life to university and a good salary. During his year in seventh column (fifth form), this innocence is altered as Friedrich encounters hazing, cruelty, death, and the Nazi code. His friendship with Albrecht, the ascetic son of the area's governor, is central to this education; a night in the forest hunting for escaped Russian POWs brings things to a head.Written by
At least one of the Napola boxers and one of the training officers have pierced ears. Very unlikely, this being set in Nazi Germany. See more »
[reading from his essay]
"As childish as it sounds, the winter time and the sight of freshly fallen snow always fill us with inexplicable joy. Perhaps because as children, we associated it with Christmas. I always imagine myself the hero who killed dragons, rescued virgins, and freed the world from evil. As we went out yesterday to find the prisoners, I felt like that little boy who wanted to save the world."
But as we returned, I understood that I am part of the evil that I wanted...
[...] See more »
I saw this film once, and needed to return once more to see it again. This film touched my heart in a way that very few others have. Max Riemelt and Tom Schilling give one of the most convincing and stellar performances I have ever seen. Their chemistry on screen is such that the audience becomes fully engaged in their emotion and in their situation. Their heart-wrenching performance is illuminated by director Dennis Gansel's artistic genius. There are breathtaking shots of German landscape and scenery. There are angles and shots throughout the movie that remain very close to you long after the movie is finished. The story is a very vivid reminder of the horrors that man is capable of producing. This German film is a reminder of that horror, but also reminds us that there is innocence within that horror. If anything, this film depicted young men who were stripped of their innocence. Some gave in to the horror, while our heroes fought against it. For those who are lovers of the German language, you will hear no finer dialogue and range of speech than in this incredible work. I urge anyone and everyone to see this film.
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