The Lives of Others (2006)

Drama | 137 Min

Movie Info

  • Release Date: 20 Jun, 2024
  • Release Date: 2006
  • Genres: Drama

Movie Story

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“The Lives of Others” is at once a political thriller and a human drama. The film opens in East Berlin, in 1984, with a scene where “Stasi” Captain Gerd Wiesler (Ulrich Muehe), code name “HGW XX/7,” is demonstrating his interrogation technique to a class of aspiring “Stasi” policemen, using an actual video of his own interrogation of a suspect. A student asks a question that Wiesler judges to be a bit too compassionate (read “bourgeois”), and the professor marks the student’s name on the attendance record: surely this student has just flunked the course, or maybe worse. During the feature’s first thirty minutes, von Donnersmarck depicts a portrait of Wiesler that seems to border on caricature: Wiesler is a highly skilled officer of the “Stasi”, a proud, zealous, disciplined professional. He is one of the many cogs in the wheel of “the System,” working anonymously and tirelessly, convinced that all his efforts are necessary for building a better Socialist society.

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Producers: Quirin Berg, Max Wiedemann; Screenwriter: Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck

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