Günther Simon

  • Kurt Maetzig – Ernst Thälmann – Sohn seiner Klasse AKA Ernst Thälmann – Son of the Working Class (1954)

    1951-1960DramaGermanyKurt MaetzigPolitics

    This historical-biographical film begins in the first days of November 1918 on the western front. News comes to the soldiers of a revolutionary uprising in Kiel. Young Thälmann, a soldier against his will, would like to join the expanding conflict on the side of his comrades in Hamburg. As the revolution becomes threatened by the betrayal of the right-wing Social Democrats and the splintering of the working class, he nevertheless tries unremittingly to unite the workers. The reactionaries grow ever stronger and the neediness of ordinary people multiplies. In this dire situation, the Hamburg police commissioner would like to block the unloading of a ship full of provisions that were sent from Petrograd as a message of solidarity. But Thälmann prevails in unloading it. The high point and conclusion of the first part of the Thälmann films is established at the Hamburg Uprising in October 1923.Read More »

  • Kurt Maetzig – Ernst Thälmann – Führer seiner Klasse AKA Ernst Thälmann – Leader of the Working Class (1955)

    1951-1960DramaGermanyKurt MaetzigPolitics

    The second part of the Ernst Thaelmann films encompasses the time period between 1930 and Thaelmann’s murder in 1944. It shows Thaelmann’s battle to achieve a united front with all German workers against the National Socialists, his arrest following Hitler’s seizure of power and the eleven years of his incarceration, in which he unwaveringly clings to his beliefs until his death. An attempt to free him on the part of his comrades ends disastrously, and a corrupt offer of freedom from Goering himself receives Thaelmann’s refusal. Read More »

  • Konrad Wolf – Sonnensucher AKA Sun Seekers (1958)

    1951-1960ClassicsDramaGermanyKonrad Wolf

    Director Konrad Wolf’s gritty and controversial tale follows two young women who go to work at a uranium mine in Wismut, East Germany. With anarchists, former S.S. soldiers, and ex-Russian officers working in close proximity, the mine becomes a microcosm of world politics and social unrest.Read More »

  • Horst E. Brandt & Heinz Thiel – Heroin (1968)

    1961-1970ActionCrimeGermanyHorst E. Brandt and Heinz Thiel

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    This East German movie was co-produced with studios in Hungary and Yugoslavia, with many interesting location shots (border checkpoint to West Berlin, the Gellert bath in Budapest, and more). The plot is about French drug dealers, who obtain heroin somewhere in the Middle East, and smuggle it in several steps to East Berlin, and from there to France (or so it appears), killing when necessary. The hero is an officer of East German customs, who with detective work, some masquerade, and occasional violent action ultimately unravels the whole network, of course with the support of the local customs departments.Read More »

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