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The Good German (2006)

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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.

Director:

Steven Soderbergh

Writers:

Paul Attanasio (screenplay), Joseph Kanon (novel)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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
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Storyline

Berlin, July, 1945. Journalist Jake Geismer arrives to cover the Potsdam conference, issued a captain's uniform for easier passage. He also wants to find Lena, an old flame who's now a prostitute desperate to get out of Berlin. He discovers that the driver he's assigned, a cheerful down-home sadist named Corporal Tully, is Lena's keeper. When the body of a murdered man washes up in Potsdam (within the Russian sector), Jake may be the only person who wants to solve the crime: U.S. personnel are busy finding Nazis to bring to trial, the Russians and the Americans are looking for German rocket scientists, and Lena has her own secrets. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

If war is hell then what comes after? See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, violence and some sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | German | Russian

Release Date:

19 January 2007 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El buen alemán See more »

Filming Locations:

California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$32,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$76,817, 17 December 2006, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$1,308,696, 12 April 2007

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$5,914,908, 12 April 2007
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | SDDS | Dolby Digital

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Cate Blanchett studied Marlene Dietrich and Ingrid Bergman in order to play a German character. Ingrid Bergman, however, was Swedish. See more »

Goofs

Camera shadow on the prosecutors' uniform at 57:59 into the film. See more »

Quotes

Patrick Tully: You can say what you want about the war... but, the war was the best thing that ever happened to me. Because when you have money, then, for the first time in your life, you underSTAND it, what money does for you. Where before all you understood was NOT having it? Money allows you to be who you truly are.
See more »

Crazy Credits

All the logos appear in black and white, while the Warner Brothers logo appears in the forties old style See more »

Connections

References Casablanca (1942) See more »

Soundtracks

Somebody Else Is Taking My Place
Written by Bob Ellsworth, Dick Howard and Russ Morgan
Performed by William Marsh, Chris Ross, Johnny Britt and Gary Stockdale
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
40's Movie styling does not a thriller make.
12 February 2007 | by EspontaneoSee all my reviews

Soderbergh continues to experiment, but as with Solaris, it just doesn't pay off.

Its clear that from the off that Soderbergh has set himself a strict mandate for this film, make it as much like a forties movie as possible. The music, the acting style, the lighting, the process shots and background paintings all give it a great look and feel.

However, everything is so low key and downbeat that it fails to deliver any suspense or menace. What is essentially a modern thriller dressed as classic noir just isn't thrilling. The plot twist and turns but the drama is never heightened, the pace never seems to increase, it just plods along to its conclusion.

Apart from the sex and swearing, the actors seem straight jacketed into their roles by the 40's styling seemingly because the script lacks any of the dry wit and charm you'd find in a genuine movie of this era. George Clooney for example has every little to do, his character has none of the snappy dialog you'd expect, given his Marlowe-esquire role in the plot. Soderbergh compounds matters by drawing an unfortunate comparison with Bogart. Though generally the acting was of the high quality you'd expect from such a sterling cast, it's difficult to empathise with their characters plights given the lack of suspense or melodrama.

Overall the experiment fails to deliver anything other than a beautifully shot but unengaging film.

Very disappointing.


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