The Lives of Others is a German film set in the early 1980s.
The Lives of Others is a political thriller as well as being a very human drama. The film tells the story of couple Georg Dreyman (Sebastian Koch) and Christa-Maria Sieland (Martina Gedeck), a Dramatist and successful actress respectively. They are well-known, and huge stars in Eastern Germany. However, when The Minister of Culture becomes interested in Christa-Maria, he appoints Weisler (Ulrich Mühe), a secret service agent, to spy on the couple. Weisler becomes fascinated with Crista and Dreyman’s lives, and he secretly gets drawn deeper and deeper into them.
The story is based around the very real situation people in former East Germany found themselves in: living in constant fear of being spied upon by secret police. The film captures the unsettling fear with harsh and shocking reality. The Lives of Others feels extremely authentic, from beginning to end.
All of the characters are extremely likable and sympathetic, even the agent Weisler. It is fantastically written, powerfully directed, and the performances are amazing.
The Lives of Others is a beautiful and masterful film. It is hard to believe that this is the director, Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck’s, debut feature.
This is an enthralling and outstanding movie that is touching and human as well as exciting and tense. It is at once extremely enjoyable, and profoundly disturbing.
Director: Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck
Stars: Ulrich Mühe, Martina Gedeck and Sebastian Koch