Greatest Film Scenes
and Moments



The Lives of Others (2006)

 





Title Screen
Movie Title/Year and Scene Descriptions
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The Lives of Others (2006, Germ.) (aka Das Leben der Anderen)

In writer/director Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck's dramatic thriller (his debut feature film and the Oscar winner for Best Foreign Film) - an acclaimed German socio-political drama and character study set in the 1980s:

  • the scene of the bugging of suspected but successful Socialist playwright Georg Dreyman's (Sebastian Koch) apartment by the East German Stasi (secret police)
  • the keyhole shot of an apartment neighbor noticing the activity and being threatened to keep silent
  • the continual round-the-clock monitoring of Dreyman's activities by survelliance agent Hauptmann Gerd Wiesler (Ulrich Mühe in his final role before his death in a part written specifically for him by the writer/director) who was slowly transformed into being a conflicted but sympathetic 'guardian angel' (in the elevator scene with a young boy)
  • the scene in which Dreyman's devoted lover, beautiful actress Christa-Maria Sieland (Martina Gedeck) cleansed herself (both physically and emotionally) in the bathtub/shower of the filth after a forced sexual encounter with Cultural Department head Minister Bruno Hempf (Thomas Thieme) in the backseat of his limousine (in exchange for prescription drugs and protection)
Unwanted Sexual Encounter
Christa-Maria
Cleansing Herself
Christa-Maria to Georg Dreyman: "Just Hold Me"
  • the scene of the comforting of Christa-Maria by Dreyman when she was curled up in a fetal position, and she requested: "Just hold me"
  • Wiesler's failed attempt to emulate the tenderness of CMS' and Dreyman's relationship with a rigidly-scheduled prostitute in his drab apartment
  • the heart-breaking scene in which a distressed Christa-Maria committed suicide by running in front of a truck after she thought she had betrayed Dreyman by revealing the location of his incriminating red-ribboned typewriter that he had used to pen an anonymous article (ironically about suicide in East Germany) for West German magazine Der Spiegel - she was unaware that Wiesler had secretly removed the typewriter from under the apartment's doorsill to protect her and Dreyman
  • the scene of Georg's anguish over Christa-Maria's bloody death in the street
  • the scene in which a demoted Wiesler quietly walked out of his dead-end mail-steaming job nearly 5 years later when the Berlin Wall came down in 1989
  • the final sequence in which Georg discovered that Wielser had protected him when he read the declassified surveillance transcripts on himself, and discovered a thumbprint smudge of red ink (from the red-ribboned typewriter) next to his official notation HGW XX/7
  • the scene of Georg locating Wiesler (now a newspaper deliveryman) and deciding not to introduce himself to the humbled man
  • the final scene two years later when Wiesler saw a bookstore poster advertising a new book written by Dreyman titled "Sonata For a Good Man" and its dedication: "HGW XX/7 gewidmet, in Dankbarkeit. (Dedicated to HGW XX/7, in Gratitude)"
  • the film's final line of dialogue: Wiesler's subdued, double-entendre reply to the cashier's question if he'd like the book he was purchasing gift-wrapped: ("No, it's for me")

Keyhole View of Neighbor, Watching E. German Secret Police (Stasi)

Agent Hauptmann Gerd Wiesler


Wiesler with Prostitute


Suicidal Death of Christa-Maria - in Georg's Arms


Thumbprint of Red Ink


Wiesler Buying Dreyman's Latest Book: "It's for me"

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