For this project you are to watch this film (The Lives of Others). It will be a more challenging film as it is in German, but it does have
Movie Review Project
The Lives of Others:
For this project you are to watch this film. It will be a more challenging film as it is in German, but it does have English subtitles. However, it is an excellent depiction of life in East Berlin in the early 1980’s and the role of the Stasi in the everyday lives of the citizens of East Germany. Various summaries of the movie can be found online and I have no objection to you reading them ahead of time to get an overview of the movie, however they do not substitute for the movie itself. After watching the film, I would like you to write a paper in which you address the following prompt.
The film, The Lives of Others, is a strong indictment of the Communist governments,
not only in East Berlin, but in all Eastern European states. More specifically, it reveals the
destruction of lives, the abuse of power, the fear of retribution ,and the apparent lack of
personal freedom in East Germany under a one-party system of government.
In your essay you should select three of the four topics mentioned in the prompt. Then, you should show, using specific evidence from the film, how each topic is reflected in the movie. The structure of your paper should follow the following outline.
Introduction-a brief summary of the movie, including time period and
location as well as a clear and concise thesis
Body Paragraph 1: discussion of your first topic, i.e. abuse of power and
inclusion of specific examples(at least two) from the movie to support your statements
Body Paragraph 2: discussion of your second topic with at least two specific examples from the movie
Body Paragraph 3: discussion of your third topic with at least two specific examples from the movie
Body Paragraph 4: discussion of whether or not there are any individuals who rise above the
system and who are willing to take risks for others; be specific
Conclusion: recap of your major points; discussion of the value of this film;
evaluation of the film’s authenticity based upon your class readings
Your essay should be approximately 1000-1200 words in length, double-spaced, and typed. Please include the word count at the end of your paper. It also should include a works cited page, which will include the film as well as any additional resources that you used. I will email you a grading rubric so that you will know the criteria upon which your grade will be based. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Below I have indicated the main characters in this movie. You should focus your attention upon them and their actions.
George Dreyman: successful playwright living in East Berlin; perceived as a loyal supporter of the party and state
Christa-Marie Sieland: a popular and successful actress in East Berlin who is in a relationship with Dreyman
Gerd Wiesler: Captain in the Stasi; eventually ordered to spy on Dreyman
Anton Grubitz: Lieutenant-Colonel in the Stasi; Wiesler’s superior
Minister Bruno Hempf: Minister of Culture who is infatuated with Christa-Marie
Albert Jerska: Dreyman’s friend who was a former theater director; blacklisted for his anti-government and, consequently, out of work
Answer preview for For this project you are to watch this film (The Lives of Others). It will be a more challenging film as it is in German, but it does have