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Purchase The Lives of Others (2006) Movie Online and Download - Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck 🎥
Drama, Thriller
IMDB rating:
Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck
Martina Gedeck as Christa-Maria Sieland
Ulrich Mühe as Hauptmann Gerd Wiesler
Sebastian Koch as Georg Dreyman
Ulrich Tukur as Oberstleutnant Anton Grubitz
Thomas Thieme as Minister Bruno Hempf
Hans-Uwe Bauer as Paul Hauser
Volkmar Kleinert as Albert Jerska
Matthias Brenner as Karl Wallner
Herbert Knaup as Gregor Hessenstein
Bastian Trost as Häftling 227
Marie Gruber as Frau Meineke
Volker Michalowski as Schriftexperte (as Zack Volker Michalowski)
Werner Daehn as Einsatzleiter in Uniform
Storyline: In the early 1980s, Georg Dreyman (a successful dramatist) and his longtime companion Christa-Maria Sieland (a popular actress), were huge intellectual stars in (former) East Germany, although they secretly don't always toe the party line. One day, the Minister of Culture becomes interested in Christa, so the secret service agent Wiesler is instructed to observe and sound out the couple, but their life fascinates him more and more.
Type Resolution File Size Codec Bitrate Format
HQ DVD-rip 720x432 px 1853 Mb 1963 Kbps mp4 Purchase
iPhone 640x270 px 1539 Mb h264 1562 Kbps mp4 Purchase
1984, East Germany - Shield and Sword of the Party know everything
"The Lives of Others", the 2007 very deserving Oscar winner for the Best Foreign Film is IMO, the best film of last year regardless of the country it was made in. It took its writer/director several years first to thoroughly research still very painful events of the recent German history, the ones that deal with infamous and evil STASI (State Secret Police) and how it infiltrated and affected almost every aspect of GDR life. Before the collapse of the Soviet system and its most ominous and infamous symbol, the wall in the end of the 80s, life in East Germany of 1984 had imitated art precisely like in the prophetic and terrifying George Orwell's novel. Each citizen could have and majority were closely monitored by STASI which motto was "Shield and Sword of the Party" and its goal, "To know everything". By the time East Germany collapsed in 1989, STASI employed an estimated 91,000 employees and 300,000 informants; about one in fifty East Germans collaborated with the powerful and Omni-present Secret Police, one of the most extensive infiltrations of a police apparatus in history. The STASI monitored political behavior among GDR citizens, and is known to have used torture and intimidation to mute, corrupt, and destroy dissent. Even those who believed they were above suspicion due to their closeness to the prominent members of the government were not safe. The film explores the lives of those who watched and listened and those on the other side of the wire.

I was shocked to find out that such astounding movie was a directorial debut of 33 years old Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck - so artistically impeccable this honest, human, horrifying, harrowing yet hopeful film is. The film makers had recreated successfully and precisely the 1980s with its dark suffocating atmosphere of constant abuse of individual privacy in the former German Democratic republic. The locations, the huge dominating gray apartment buildings of the big city where every wall seems to have the ears and the eyes , the old cars on the streets of East Berlin – everything looks, sounds, and feels authentically . As great as "The Lives of Others is", it would not have been the same without Ulrich Mühe, as Captain Gerd Wiesler, a highly skilled and efficient STASI officer and a loyal member of the Socialist Unity Party of Germany, who spies on successful playwright and his actress girlfriend by the order of corrupted hypocritical member of the government. While listening to the Lives of Others, Wiesler's own life would change in the way he had never expected.

Once you start watching the movie, you'll see how Ulrich Mühe effortlessly over towers every other performance on the screen, and they are all excellent. The real life of Ulrich Mühe could make a great and compelling movie and the script for "The Lives of Others" was written with him in mind. He was born, grew up, and became a famous actor in the Eastern Germany back in the late 70s of the last century. By the words of von Donnersmarck, STASI began spying on Mühe right after he had graduated from High School because STASI realized that he would be great even before he himself realized that. After German reunification, Mühe discovered evidence in his STASI file that he had been under surveillance not only by four of his fellow actors in the East Berlin theater, but also by his second wife, Jenny Gröllmann. This was denied by Gröllmann who, after an acrimonious and highly-publicized court case, succeeded in obtaining an injunction to prevent Mühe from repeating the allegation in a book. Mühe's response when asked how he prepared for his role in Das Leben der Anderen was simple, "I remembered". Mühe passed away few months ago, in July 2007 due to stomach cancer at the age or 54, and when I read it, I felt emptiness - like a very good close friend has gone forever. His performance in the film "The Lives of Others" will live always as one of the best and most memorable given by any actor of the screen.
A Slow Burner
About half-an-hour into the movie I thought I was in for a bit of a rough ride, you know... that force-yourself-to-the-end type of film. Fortunately, the movie got better and more intriguing as it progressed, turning out to be a very rewarding piece of entertainment.

Luckily, I managed to bypass my initial negative preconceptions, such as the German language, having subtitles and no recognisable actors, deciding to give the film a go based on my very positive experiences of foreign language films this year, in the place of the usual insult to your intelligence, spoon-fed Hollywood fodder.

It's a rewarding film that requires a certain amount of perseverance at the start. It's educational, thought provoking, visually intriguing but not beautiful, almost beleaguering your senses with the grimy weather, the drab clothes worn by practically all, the use of greys and browns for furnishings, the austere colour palette, the depressing standard of the cars and vans, and virtually nothing joyous or warm to look at. We're instead reliant on our involvement with the characters and their insights and motives for doing what they do.

A film that seems to adapt and improvise as it goes along, the characters feeling their way through events as well, entering uncharted waters and discovering the need to swim. Yet again, film that establishes the value of historical diversity that Germany has to offer from the 20th century. Only, the language/subtitle thing may put a few people off from the start, which is a shame if you're young and looking for action-satisfaction.
Masterpiece !
Does not matter if they were called STASI , SECURITATE , KGB , SEKURIMI.... they are just names , but behind them they represented an instrument of terror , repression in what is now former communist countries . A man working for such an organization can be A GOOD MAN (moral,compassionate,human,unbiased,tolerant....) ? How many of them they had a conscience ? It is hard to say that agent (whatever his codename was) is torn by guilt , conscience or simply love for beautiful actress . Who knows ? For me that is an enigma . More people who voted positively for this movie are from eastern Europe ; is normal they witnessed those events (as myself) you can forget those times , with bad things , good things filtered of course by personal opinion and personal experience . I did not know then the time flew , I was enthralled , enchanted , even if I kind of had guessed some things they gonna end up bad . A very moving and humane movie !
Truth is stranger than fiction
Can you imagine a world where people are continuously spied on, where the police set up surveillance equipment in the attics, where even typewriters are registered and, in spite of this,a world accepting of refugees? I am not talking about science fiction. I am talking about real life, the real events that took place in East Germany before the Fall of the Wall.While I was watching 'The lives of others'I couldn't help comparing it to another film, 'Good Bye, Lenin'; both are widely applauded approaches to the recent history of East Germany. But I think one of them is definitely superior to the other; read on if you'd like to know which.Both films are German and were released more or less at the same time -around 2005- and they share factual accuracy and the atmosphere of that historical period, although the first one takes place mainly in the years before the Fall of the Wall and the second, in the years immediately after. Both films have a lot in common, such as an appealing theme, plausible dialogues, lots of moving scenes and convincing acting. In spite of sharing a common theme, they have different approaches, since 'The lives of others' shows the story of a playwright who is being spied on by 'the Party'. What is a cold relationship at the beginning of the story turns into sympathy, what seems love turns into treason, what should have been informing on somebody turns into respect and admiration. On the other hand, 'Good bye, Lenin!'is very innovative mainly because it has a large dose of comedy, which is remarkably powerful. When his mother suffers a heart attack and awakes from a coma seriously weakened, Alex, the main character has to pretend that nothing has changed, that East Berlin is the same as it was before the Fall of the Wall, because a great shock like that could cause her death, so there he goes doing the impossible to keep the 'status quo'. This situation leads to entertaining scenes and appealing dialogue. In addition, both films were recorded on set and on location -we can enjoy watching what Karl Marx Allee looked like almost thirty years ago.However, although both films portray our recent history very convincingly, I strongly recommend 'Good bye, Lenin!'because it is funny, moving and grabs your attention from the very first moment. And it can also make you think!
Powerful human movie that everyone must see
I'm a big fan of German movies, I always have a feeling of a very deep and human message that they can only understand and express. This movie might be about moral dilemmas, but does moral dilemmas really exists? Do we really have a difficult decision to make when we know what's always the right thing to do? This in my point of view is the real thread of the movie, moral choices. What's the right thing to do? To who we owe a good moral act? Can we be part of something that might be immoral and feel good about it? This movie is superb! The final line of the movie almost made me cry alone in my room. Very moving story, with great actors and a superb direction. I would watch this movie again and would definitely share it with a lot of people. The Lives of Others is now one of my top 10 movies of all times.
Outstandingly great movie
I wonder why there has been so little written and publicized about this movie. This should be seen in every country and its merits trumpeted from the skies.

It starts off slowly and the locale is the former East Germany, inhabited by 16 million people who are being spied upon relentlessly by their secret police. In this very real world of the Berlin Wall, there are many Stasi, 90,000, overseeing the populace, aided and abetted by hundreds of thousands of informants. Many of these snitches were blackmailed or other pressures exerted (threats to children and loved ones) and a few obliged voluntarily.

What is truly amazing is that this is Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck's directorial debut, and he maintains a masterful hand throughout and keeps the story and the tension rolling from the first scene of interrogation which is filmed back and forth between a tape educating new Stasi as to interview techniques and to the actual cell itself where it was recorded.

The movie circles around three main characters and there is a wider circle of the powerful who pull the puppet strings for a variety of reasons which become clear as the movie unfolds.

First is Georg Dreyman, a playwright on the verge of celebrating his 40th birthday. Sebastian Koch, a tall,handsome actor dressed in writerly rumple, shares an apartment with his actress girlfriend, Christa-Maria Sieland (Martina Gedeck), and exists within the strictures of the state-sponsored theatre. He is a decent man, and tries to win support for his blacklisted friends.

For reasons that become quite clear, Dreyman falls under suspicion and the whole sophisticated Stasi spying system comes into play in the era of 1984. His whole apartment is bugged and every sound is monitored.

The man in charge of all this is Captain Gerd Wiesler,(Ulrich Mühe). Ulrich's performance is nothing short of stunning. He starts as an almost robotic presence, dressed in gray, he almost disappears into every scene he's in. But one detects a clear intelligence in his bright eyes, the only part of him that's alive. Captain Wiesler lives in a non-descript arborited apartment, much like himself. He squeezes his food onto a plate from a tube.

But the captain starts to awaken slowly as he listens surreptitiously on the state of the art equipment secreted in the attic of Dreyman's building. He starts to fall in love with the couple and then pressure from above is brought to bear on him to dig for the dirt in Dreyman's life.

And he is in a dilemma now, as he is drawn further and further into the life of Dreman and his girlfriend.

I won't throw spoilers down. Suffice to say is that the story is enthralling right down to the very last frame. The acting is superb, the direction impeccable and the world of East Germany meticulously drawn with the viewer respected enough to find his or her own emotional path through the plot.

The ending is truly one of a kind. So right and true that I was left nodding, it was the only one possible.

A must see, I will sing the praises of this film to all I know. 10 out of 10 from me. Right up there in my top 50 of all time. I find it so disappointing that these movies don't get wider release AND compete for an Oscar in the best picture of the year and not just for best foreign film. Now there's a heretical thought!
Lives of Others........ don't miss this one!!
I am not going to repeat what everyone else has already said as I agree with most of the comments. I have just seen it at the Toronto Film Festival and out of 24 movies I saw.... it far exceeded anything else I saw in the 9 days and can only say it was my #1 favourite. I feel fortunate that I live in such a multicultural city that we have this fantastic festival to see films such as this.

I regret that I had to miss the Questions and Answers at the end of film as I had another film to get to. I would love to hear what was discussed if anyone else was there and would like to get back to me or post on board. PLEASE AND THANK YOU... sh
Amazing movie
Set on the 1980s and during the Cold War, "Das Leben der Anderen" tells the story of the world created by the Stasi (the internal army created by the Socialist Party) and the citizens of the GDR living in a world of repression.

The official state police, Gerd Wiesler (Ulrich Muhn), is a specialist in interrogation and is assigned the espionage case of a playwright named Georg Dreyman (Sebastian Koch).

It is for this reason (being a playwright) that he is placed under surveillance. As the investigation progresses, he unknowingly becomes aware of its own existence and limited empathy for those who follow him, taking precedence over their obedience and loyalty to the Stasi - so much so that he begins to fudge documents and lying about the events in the life of Dreyman.

"Das Leben der Anderen" is a low budget ever for a German film but it is exceptionally written capturing the essence of people's feelings at the time.

The photography is wonderful and captures a dark and drab East Germany, with its dull lighting and soft colors, perfectly illustrated the dismay of its citizens. The performances throughout the film are excellent, the best performance however for me is Ulrich Muhn. the film is a great piece of art and entertainment that should be seen by any movie lover.

My Rating - 9/10

(Original Review written May 25, 2013)
A Monumental Triumph!
The acclaimed German-speaking film, The Lives of Others is a well-written, addicting thriller that talks about a time in very modern history that not many movies have covered. This film covers Eastern Berlin in the 1980's, just before the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. Unlike many thrillers, this film doesn't rely on drawn-out car chases or bloody gun battles, but more so on tense character development and I welt so moved by the film, I literally thought there would be members of the Stasi creeping up behind me while watching the film.

Florian Donnersmark's film, which was awarded an Oscar for best foreign film, is about a member of the secret police named Captain Wiesler who listens into people he believes to be enemies. But when he is assigned to listen to the famous and beloved playwright, Georg Dreyman, his life is about to take on a big change.

This film is great in part to the wonderful acting. The late Ulrich Muhe does a wonderful job as Captain Wiesler and all his scenes were just perfection. In fact, the final scene he is in should be enough to move you to tears. Sebastian Koch does a great job as Georg Dreyman, a playwright who is also bent on escaping over the Wall.

Overall, The Lives of Others is a very well-made thriller that will teach you about the lifestyle of people back then and how the citizens had to live in fear. There are no car chases here, but there is an actual story that is worth checking out. These kind of slow-burners are the best thrillers of them all and this made for an engaging thriller. Despite being spoken in German, I think Americans should watch this film. I rate this film 9/10.
You can sacrifice anything but yourself and your love and love filled with guilt is better to be dead.
You can sacrifice anything but yourself and your love and love filled with guilt is better to be dead.

The theme of the movie is complex to construe coz it has many layers, its very humane as a theme and brings very gross realities as a human being. Setup in the 1980's Germany where it was still divided and it was in East Germany about an artist couple, a writer and an actress being watched over by the Stasi, by HGW XX/7 the code name of the Policeman who wil note the records of what the couple does all through. This policeman played by Ulrich Muhe is the protagonist of the film. Now, the whole movie drives with his writings, his listenings and what he makes out of them. Truth is kept alive by this man and that is what he lives for, for truth.

Now, few movies have a very engrossing screenplay from first frame and this one has it and deservingly is one of the best films in terms of story and screenplay, the direction is so well done that never for a slightest moment did I feel that something was out of place or it is uncalled for, everything went as per the script which is the true hero. There are no aberrations as such as each character is etched out superbly. You cannot write characters as black and white coz there is a flaw in each and that's what is shown.

It's one of the few films that is supremely human and music too has it's own place to bring out humanity, like reference of Lenin's quote on Betthoven's symphony. Watch it to know it, I cannot comprehend in mere words what this film is.

One of the superb films in recent times. I make it 5/5.
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