The Lives of Others (Das Leben der Anderen)

Mark THE LIVES OF OTHERS

6/6
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Total votes: 5
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Chevalier Bayard
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The Lives of Others (Das Leben der Anderen)

Postby Chevalier Bayard » Sun 11 Feb, 2007 20:38

Today I start a topic on the first movie from a German director,  Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck.

Believe me, if the rest incoming is at the level of The Lives Of Other, you should remind that long name ;)

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IMDb wrote: Leben der Anderen, Das  (2006)
Director: Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck
Genre: Drama
Tagline: Before the Fall of the Berlin Wall, East Germany's Secret Police Listened to Your Secrets.
Country: Germany
Language: German
Runtime: 137 min


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It's very hard to talk about The Lives Of Other without spoiling the movie too much.  Know then that the story takes place in 1981 in the former German Democratic Republic (East Germany) of the Communist Block where the Stasi, the secret police, is known to know everything on everyone.

Captain Gerd Wiesler (amazing Ulrich Mühe) is a Stasi instructor with an amazing reputation. Captain Gerd Wiesler has indeed a natural skill to detect the traitors to the Socialist State. He knows as well all methods to get the proofs and informations he needs from the suspects who fall in his hands for their misfortune.

Captain Gerd Wiesler seems to have no feeling at all which makes him just more efficient in his job.


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His superior, Lieutenant Colonel Anton Grubitz  (Ulrich Tukur) who knows him since their entry in the service, shows him a profound respect and at once thinks about him when Minister Bruno Hempf (Thomas Thieme) entrusts him with a very delicate mission: to put under constant monitoring a very popular writer, Georg Dreyman (perfect Sebastian Koch).

Dreyman lives with an as popular actress and counts among his fans none the less than Margot Honecker. Therefore the work must be kept as secret as possible but Minister Bruno Hempf made his point very clear to Lieutenant Colonel Anton Grubitz who then made it as clear to Captain Gerd Wiesler: Dreyman has to go down. Whatever the meaning used as long as they are discreet, Captain Gerd Wiesler must find something wrong about "lazlo", Dreyman's new code name in Stasi's records.

The Stasi machine is starting off and this won't go without many impacts on the artists couple's lives, the ones of their closes, and even other ones, unintentionally involved and added to the "lazlo" record.

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This is only the beginning of the plot and I really can't tell you more from now on if I don't want to spoil you on one of the best story I've seen on screen since a long time.

I advise you who have not seen the movie yet to rush in your movie theater / dvd rental / online shop / ... whatever but GO SEE THIS MOVIE !!!

Believe it's very frustrating for me to not go farther in the plot but you can expect many twists (and clever ones) in this brightly told story which takes you in a men made hell based on the fear of the other who, if he's not a Stasi agent can be one of its numerous informants.

According to Wikipedia:
Wikipedia wrote:By the time East Germany collapsed in 1989, it was estimated that 91,000 full-time employees and 300,000 informants were employed by the Stasi. In other words, about one in fifty East Germans collaborated with the Stasi--one of the highest penetrations of any civilian society by an intelligence-gathering organization.


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Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck has done a lot of research on the subject and his movie really re-creates very well this paranoid world where feelings and passions are to be banned if you don't want them to betray you in a way or another. But also world where ambition and envy are still there, feeding themselves on the cowardice of their victims, afraid of a system which can break you down before you see it coming.

As said already many times here, the directing of The Lives Of Other is amazing and serves brightly a great story also served by a grand casting with actors giving all their best to very well written characters.

You have to see this movie !!

6/6 from me.

Chevvie

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Postby glizzery » Tue 13 Feb, 2007 02:50

Very nice review Chevvie :)

I liked that movie very much myself, gave it a 6/6 as well ;)

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Postby absinthe » Tue 27 Feb, 2007 15:07

100% agree with u, chev !
I think that I was even more felt because a part of my family lived in RDA !


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