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A Top 5 in German Film

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With the World Cup having come to an end, and Germany having lifted the trophy as the rightful victors, here is a rundown of the top 5 films that the country has to offer:

1. Metropolis (Fritz Lang, 1927)

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Regarded as the first science-fiction film, Fritz Lang’s dystopian masterpiece tells the story of the unjust realities of class separation and the attempts made by protagonists Freder and Maria to put it to an end. What makes Metropolis a classic is the blending of social commentary with visually stunning special effects and set designs.

 

2. The Lives of Others (Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck, 2006)

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The Lives of Others chronicles the surveillance of playwright Georg Dreyman by Stasi officer Gerd Wiesler during the partition of Berlin in 1984. Matters take an unexpected turn when Wiesler develops sympathy for Dreyman. The Lives of Others was rightfully complimented on its truthful depiction of the political climate in Germany at the time, and its close attention to detail.

3. Goodbye, Lenin! (Wolfgang Becker, 2003)

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Wolfgang Becker’s Goodbye, Lenin! offers a different take on the fall of the Berlin Wall. Set in the two years between the fall of the wall and Berlin’s reunification, the film centres around Alex Kerner, and the trouble he goes through to conceal the reunification of Berlin from his die-hard Communist mother after her heart attack and coma. Despite depicting the emotional toll that reunification had on many East Germans, Goodbye, Lenin! tells a distressing tale from a light-hearted point of view.

 

4. Das Boot (Wolfgang Petersen, 1981)

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A World War II film based on the novel of the same name, Das Boot tells the story of the crew members aboard the fictional submarine U-96. The film exposes the undeniable pride many of the crew members had in serving their country, while still realistically showing the claustrophobic and uncomfortable environment inside a U-boat.

 

5. Inglorious Basterds (Quentin Tarantino, 2009)

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This German-American film by Hollywood heavyweight Quentin Tarantino is the only dual national on the list, and deservedly so. Inglorious Basterds offers up a tables-have-turned scenario that satisfies even the most pacifistic. Done in the director’s classically bloody style, the film also boasts a star-studded ensemble cast including Brad Pitt and Christoph Waltz, who won that year’s Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.

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