Sometimes, everyone needs a break from Hollywood. In these times, consider watching german-made movies.
Culturally-speaking, it’s a breath of fresh air. You’ll meet new faces and stumble upon new ways of presenting daily issues. For me though, it’s the language experience. And with another language, you get new ways of thinking about the world, new ways of expressing feelings and new ways of living and doing things. Here’s a list of german movies I’ve watched and recommend to you.
- In the road film Goodbye Berlin (Tschick), two boys do outrageous things during their summer getaway — stealing a car even — but they aren’t merely portrayed in juvenile ways. In fact, their conversations throughout the movie will convince you of their humanity in ways no other male adolescent conversations in hollywood movies ever have. Another cool thing about it is that the director is Turkish-German. Check out the trailer:
2. Watching Toyland will leave you with a realization of how important it is to think about other people; the value of altruism. Plus, watching something that happened in Germany in the original language is simply priceless — The realness is intensified.
3. And then there’s the Berlin wall movies. Set during the era when Germany was still divided, The Lives of Others (Das Leben der Anderen) is about the struggle of a writer who believes in freedom and the unexpected (positive) consequences of his struggle. Again, watching German history in a language that is not English is such a relief.
4. In Beloved Sisters, following the life of the renowned poet Schiller, director Dominik Graf provides a charming portrayal of Schiller’s life by focusing on the people that made his life colorful:
5. Another creative movie about the lives of people during the Berlin wall era, which can be thought of as an allegory to what it actually means to be human, is Der Himmel Über Berlin, otherwise known as Wings of Desire. Surreally beautiful is what it is. Interestingly, the English and German names of this movie have nothing to do with each other.
6. What happens if you are unsatisfied with living in west Germany? Why, you cross over the border, of course, albeit in the most unusually illegal and dangerous way. Ballon (directed by Michael Herbig) is made for those who like a shot of suspense from movie-watching.
7. Das Wunder von Bern (The Miracle of Bern) is a film about the importance of learning from, forgiving and helping each other. After returning from being a prisoner of war in the world war, a strict, old-fashioned father learns new ways of interacting with his family, with the help of his good-natured son. Suitable for football fans too.
8. In Die Wunderübung, a modern couple decides to seek help to resolve their marriage crisis. The scriptwriting is comical yet intelligent and very realistic.
9. In case you’re looking for a young-at-heart film that is full of its own unique style, consider watching Lola Rennt (Run Lola Run). Your faith in humanity will be tested in this fast-paced action-movie.
10. If you’d like to peek into a german chambermaid’s private voyeuristic life, watch The Chambermaid Lynn (Das Zimmermädchen Lynn). About an average person discovering who she can be.
11. If you’re up for a simple and heart-warming film, here’s another road film from the same Turkish-German.
12. Finally, A Coffee in Berlin is a modern film shot in black and white that millennials should be able to relate to. Also suitable for jazz fans. It won over 20 international film awards, which makes this film one of the best modern german films out there.
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