A review of The Lives of Others from The Guardian.
Nothing could provide a more effective antidote to Ostalgie – that is, the tongue-in-cheek nostalgia for the days of the Berlin wall in which educated Germans are said sometimes to indulge. This fierce and gloomy drama, written and directed by first-timer Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck, was a notable winner of this year’s best foreign film Oscar. It is an indictment of the sinister brutalities of the Stasi, the GDR’s secret police, whose tentacular network of informers was so vast that fully 2% of the entire civilian population was on the payroll – a network of fear and shame worthy of George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four.
Read the rest here.