leninfeature

On Our Screens: Goodbye, Lenin! (2003)

Movie: Good Bye, Lenin!

Year: 2003

Country: Germany

Director: Wolfgang Becker

Starring: Daniel Brühl, Katrin Sass, Chulpan Khamatova and Maria Simon

Review: 

People lie about almost everything.  And they lie for many reasons.  But ultimately, they do so to escape a predicament that they believe they cannot cope with, and more often than not, they do so at their peril.  For lies will take on a life of their own, and like a snowball, they soon grow out of hand.

As an honored and distinguished citizen, middle-age single mother Christiane Kerner attends an official ceremony commemorating the 40th anniversary of the German Democratic Republic in 1989.  While en route, Christiane is shocked to witness the arrest of her son for participating in a mass public demonstration.  She collapses in a coma following a heart attack, and during the period of her unconsciousness, the Berlin Wall falls, and the world that Christiane knows, the system she believes in and everything that she has been holding on to, fade into oblivion.

When Christiane finally comes to, eight months thereafter, Alex, Christiane’s faithful son, decides that she is too fragile to sustain the shock of the political upheaval.

The rest is a series of desperate, sometimes humorous, sometimes sad, but always creative attempts of Alex and his amateur film-making colleague, Denis Domaschke, to keep the inevitable truth from Christiane, to the extent of trying to recreate the place and times that have been irretrievably lost.

***

Rating (one to five whistles, five being the best): Four Whistles

***

How to Watch:

Amazon

***

ALSO ON OUR SCREENS:

Tokyo Story (1953)

Love Letter (1995)

Inugami (2001)

***

Stock Photo Courtesy of psamtik/Shutterstock.com