In 1940, German soldier Hans Quangel (Louis Hofmann) is killed in action during the French campaign. His parents, Otto (Brendan Gleeson) and Anna (Dame Emma Thompson), are devastated by the loss and their bereavement is unmollified by the joyful hysteria at Germany's victory. Deciding that Führer Adolf Hitler and his Nazi regime are responsible for this tragedy and much more, Otto cannot stand by any longer. As such, Otto begins to create handwritten cards denouncing the regime's abuses and lies, which he secretly deposits throughout Berlin while a disillusioned Anna insists on helping him. As the subversive cards pile up over the years, Police Detective Escherich (Daniel Brühl) is tasked to track down the leafleteer while being pressured by his increasingly impatient S.S. superior for an arrest for this "treason", regardless of actual guilt. As the stakes rise even as Nazi Germany's day of reckoning approaches, Otto and Anna are determined to spread the truth regardless of the odds, ...Written by
Kenneth Chisholm (email@example.com)
Writer and Director Vincent Perez's family lived through the horrors of World War II. His grandfather was shot by fascists in Spain. His great uncle was murdered by the Nazis in a gas chamber. Another uncle died fighting on the Russian front. See more »
Otto, what are we doing? We've lost our son. Other people have lost, but, they - they don't...
With this system - this regime, now, I feel that - we're free. I mean, freed - from all of it. This is how I feel.
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There is really very little you can criticize about a story when the story is true. The adaptation for the screen can come under scrutiny, but in this case there really is no cause for concern. It is a beautifully shot and crafted piece of cinema. Excellent Cast, and solid direction.
You are introduced to a view of history from a less common angle. The lives and story of people who opposed the rise of Nazi Germany from within. People who stood up to the fear, collusion, and general despair of the masses. Most too scared to fight back, choosing instead to lay low and hope for the best.
You can draw frightening parallels with the world today. Except we have social media to voice our anger and concerns at what we see as injustice. The tyrants and demigods around the world fight to block free speech on the internet just as Hitler and the SS did in Germany in the late 1930's and 40's. If you disagree with them you are wrong and risk being silenced and oppressed.
This film depicts the pre-internet world's attempt at quiet resistance. Slower, less reach, but still shows the importance of non conformity in the face of oppression. A valuable watch for all who love true stories, and perhaps particularly relevant at the moment.
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