Thursday, May 14, 2015

Thursday Movie Picks #44: Foreign Language Movies - German


Hello there and welcome to Thursday Movie Picks a weekly series where you share three movie picks each Thursday. The rules are simple simple: Each week there is a topic for you to create a list of three movies. Your picks can either be favourites/best, worst, hidden gems, or if you're up to it one of each.For further details visit the series main page here.


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This week's Thursday Movie Picks is Foreign Language Movies - German

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German Movies

I do a  a foreign language theme every few months or so; this is the second foreign language theme since the inception of the series. The first was French movies and there will be two more of such themes this year so look out for that if you like watching non English titles. 

I have to admit I haven't watch a lot of German language movies; still, I have caught a few gems.

The Princess and the Warrior (2000)
I've picked this  movie before (I think it was the  Mental Institution theme) but I can't help it because it is a favourite. Written and directed by Tykwer, the movie centers on a nurse at an asylum whose life clashes with a thief when she is hit by a truck. 

The Lives of Others (2006)
The movie follows an agent of the secret police in East Germany conducting surveillance on a writer and his lover and he soon becomes absorbed by their lives. It won the Oscar Foreign Language Film award, which definitely got more people to watch it, so I'm pretty sure this is going to be a popular pick this week. I'm still going to pick it because it is really good and if you have somehow missed watching it, you really should get to it.

Barbara (2012)
This is another movie set in 1980's East Germany. The movie is about Barbara, a doctor, banished to work in countryside clinic after applying to get an exit visa to join her boyfriend who lives in the West. Barbara is seen as a potential defector and as such the Stasi are watching her like a hawk and she can't trust any of her new colleagues, who can all be Stasi informants. The movie paints a scary world in a quiet manner; love it.

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So that's it...my three picks. What three movies made your list today?

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Check out some of my random Thursday Movie Picks


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17 comments:

  1. As I already picked The Lives of Others for a previous Thursday Movie week (Oscar Winners, the very first one I did) I decided picking it again. I agree that I expect it to pop up this week quite a lot, but it's not surprise. It really is an excellent film, Ulrich Muhe's performance was exceptional.

    Barbara sounds great, I am interested in that period of history so I will check it out.

    My post will be up at around Midnight UK time.

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  2. I've only seen The Lives of Others (but I really want to see Barbara) and it's such a brilliant film! Great choice.

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  3. I also have The Lives of Others on my list, and I threw Barbara in my Netflix queue awhile ago. I can't wait to check that one out.

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  4. I love The Lives of Others! Barbara has been on my list for a while, too.

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  5. I've only seen The Lives of Others. It made my list, too. Need to see Barbara.

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  6. I have only a nodding acquaintance with German film, I’ve seen hardly any and none of your choices but The Lives of Others seems like a must see, it already looks like the breakout title this week. I struggled to come up with three for the week but finally managed to find a trio:

    Run Lola Run (1998)-Lola has 20 minutes to find and replace the money her boyfriend has lost, get it to him and stop him from committing a crime. Intense, propulsive action film with a fantastic performance by Franka Potente who could not be tougher.

    The Harmonists (1997)-From 1927 to 1934 the Comedian Harmonists were a wildly popular singing sextet who toured extensively throughout Germany. The film's focus is really the trajectory of their career but once the Nazi incursion gains momentum the group's Jewish members aren't allowed to perform in public any longer causing a crisis within the group.

    Taxi zum Klo (1980)-Frank, a closeted high school teacher compulsively cruises for sex in public bathrooms eventually meeting a man he enters into a relationship with, not that it stops his behavior in the slightest. While his lover wants a more permanent arrangement Frank can't stop his wandering ways. How long can it last and how long before his secret becomes known at work? A real snapshot of a bygone era, the hedonistic, freewheeling time just before AIDS firmly clamped the lid on this kind of unfettered behavior shown here, the sex is very explicit and real. Written and directed by the film's star Frank Ripploh this was a succ├Ęs d'estime winning several critic and festival awards and becoming a cult success during its original release.

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    1. I did not like Run Lola Run. Much too trippy for me. If you do like Tom Tykwer movies, you may want to check out The Princess and the Warrior. It does have a little fantastical element in it like most of his films but less manic than Run Lola Run.

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  7. I enjoyed researching the theme this week. Thanks for this. Unfortunately, the only one of your picks I've seen is The Lives of Others so I've still got more work to do. Was a big fan of The Lives of Others.

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  8. I really, really like The Princess and the Warrior, even if it isn't quite as good as Run Lola Run. Haven't seen either The Lives of Others or Barbara, but they've been on my list for quite a while now.

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    1. Say it isn't so. I love The Princess and the Warrior; did not like Run Lola Run.

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  9. I haven't seen any of these films but have heard really good things about The Lives of Others, one of these days I will have to watch it.

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    1. Yep, it won an Oscar, and that is a platform that gives it more attention and rightly deserved.

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  10. The Lives of Others is a brilliant film. My hubby and I both loved it. I would love to see Barbara. I had a cousin who traveled to Russia in the early 80's and she recalled how there was a black car that came up to someone on the street across from her and was thrown into the car and took off. It was the Russian KGB. I knew someone else in University who thought it would be great to study in Russia and didn't believe me about the Secret Police. He came back after studying there and told me how scared he was. At 2 am he heard the police go up the stairs. he opened his door and another lady across the hall told him to shut it. He closed it but still could see enough to see the police take another renter out of his home and down the stairs. He never saw him again. It is not the Staasi but they all followed the same dictates

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    1. Interesting story you have there. It must have been terrifying to live in those places in those times when you have opposing views; unfortunately in some parts of the world, people still live in such states. I think you will like Barbara, the story is told from the perspective of the surveilled. I like that its subtle and trusts the viewers to understand what is happening without overtly explaining every little thing.

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  11. It's nice to see so much deserved love for Lives of Others, but interesting to get some lesser known recommendations too, so thanks for that!

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  12. Damn, I remember that Barbara was played in a cinema on my city, and I completely forgot about it.

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  13. Movies just don't get any better than The Lives of Others. Great pick! Haven't seen the others.

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