German TV Company congratulates our dear viewers on Victory in Europe Day. On this day, we commemorate those who fought and were killed during WWII, those who had to die far away from their homes, and those, who had to handle the war consequences in one or another way. There is not a single-family not affected by war, and we all remember it. 

We wish your home peace and joy. May never the war bother you, and your close people may never participate in any military actions. On this day, the German TV Company offers you to watch the best German movies of all time.

The Downfall (Der Untergang) 

The Downfall

Photo: Pinterest

Director: Oliver Hirschbiegel

Released: 2004

It is a movie about WWII, or rather about the rise and default of the Nazi empire. In 1942, a young woman Traudl Junge was chosen to be one of Hitler's secretaries. Three years later, the Red Army occupied Berlin. Heinrich Himmler tries to persuade Hitler to escape from the occupied capital but Hitler refuses. He is willing to win or to die in Berlin.

Hitler ends up raving in his bunker, giving orders to non-existing armies and accusing his generals of cowardy and betrayal. One by one, those people who stayed with Hitler, were executed either by Hitler, or committed suicide, or were killed later by the Soviet soldiers. 

Head-On

Head-On

Photo: Letterboxd

Director: Fatih Akin

Released: 2004

Head-On is the first German movie for 18 years to win such an award as the Golden Bear. This movie was also an important step in the development of German auteur cinematography. 

Head-On tells the story of immigrants who have arrived in Germany from Turkey but do whatever they can to preserve their traditions and religion. The younger generation though is not always willing to follow in the footsteps of their parents. 

Cahit and Sibel meet in the psychiatric ward after they both have attempted suicide. Both are of Turkish origin. Sibel begs Cahit to marry her to help her to escape from the strict family. Cahit agrees. But soon, the conventional marriage grows into something more important. 

Requiem

Requiem

Photo: YouTube

Director: Hans Christian Schmidt

Released: 2006

Michaela grew up in a deeply religious family. She goes to study in a college and discovers a completely different world. She is epileptic but in college, she drops her medications. Soon, she starts hearing voices telling her to avoid religious objects. 

Her mind doesn`t manage the changes and the doubts, and she suffers a mental breakdown. A priest tells her that she is possessed by demons. Soon, she has to undergo an exorcist ritual.

A story that could be easily a horror story is told in a very realistic way. This is one of the distinguishing features of the movies directed by Hans Christian Schmidt. And indeed, the movie plot sends the viewers back to the story of Anneliese Michel, a woman who suffered from epilepsy and was supposedly possessed by demons. 

Requiem doesn`t have special effects, tense soundtracks, or whatever. It more resembles a documentary, and this is what makes the movie so convincing.

The Lives of Others 

The Lives of Others

Photo: EFA

Director: Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck

Released: 2006

A Stasi commissar Wiesler is forced to live undercover. While he is submerging himself into “the life of others”, he turns from a devoted regime supporter into a usual human being. This transition challenges not only his personality but also our understanding of good and evil. Wiesler is in charge of surveillance of a couple but he gets sympathetic with them and does his best to cover them. After the collapse of the USSR, the surveilled playwright Dreyman tracks down Wiesler and publishes his new novel Sonate von gutem Menschen with an inscription "To HGW XX/7, in gratitude". Deeply moved, Wiesler buys the book.

Stopped on Track (Halt auf Freier Strecke)

Halt auf Freier Strecke gtvc

Photo: Virtual-History

Director: Andreas Dresen

Released: 2011

Andreas Dresen likes tackling topics that are considered taboo by others. This is one of the main reasons why his movies are so popular. 

Stopped on Track is a movie about death. The main character is terminally ill, he is suffering from brain cancer. His illness influences everything in his life: he stops remembering the basics when the illness is moving on step by step.

While it is told that all the dialogues were improvised, it doesn`t look like this. Everything is acted very neatly, the dialogues are very well-thought. Bringing real medical staff to the movie was also a step that has made the movie stand out.