Saturday, December 13, 2008

The Lives of Others

Germany 2006

Set in 1980s East Berlin, director Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck's debut feature (which earned an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film) provides an exquisitely nuanced portrait of life under the watchful eye of the state police as a high-profile couple is bugged. When a successful playwright and his actress companion become subjects of the Stasi's secret surveillance program, their friends, family and even those doing the watching find their lives changed too.

I finally made it a point to watch this and I must proclaim; WOW! Such a great film! It really does live up to it's academy awarded hype. Incredible cast, tightly knitted pacing, fantastic acting and some very enticing moments. This is a dialog strong historical dramatization noteworthy of it's social commentary of many levels. In such accordance with the socialist republic of Germany and how repressed and discontent it's influence is on it's free minded
citizens. Weisler (Ulrich Mühe) the leading actor is portrayed seemingly as a honorable supporter of his socialist republic with a steady and unflinching gaze of observance of everything. He comes off very cold as well supportive of indicting those who oppose or slander socialist ideology. This is later clarified as the exact opposite wherein he is actually pent up with disconcert of the republic's repression of it's people for which The Lives of Others and their fates lies solely in his hands. The last line of the film is one of the most memorable in all history of movie making. So, so, so good.

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