Gregor is a young soldier entering Germany with the victorious Soviet troops at the end of WWII. But he is also the child of left-wing Germans who fled from Hitler and spent the war in the Soviet Union. As a result, his return to Germany is ambivalent; he finds he is a stranger in his own land. Film critics rank Konrad Wolf's most autobiographical film among the 100 Most Significant German Films of all time.
As they enter Germany, Gregor begins to realize that he is different from all his comrades in arms, for this defeated land is his home country, the Germans he meets are his compatriots. He is a victor, but also one of the vanquished. He attempts to understand the Germans he meets along his way, but he is a 19-year-old: inquisitive, occasionally uncomprehending and repeatedly dismayed by the atrocities and lies he encounters.
A true landmark of postwar German cinema, Konrad Wolf's masterpiece is a poetic exploration of the postwar dilemma of German identity and a powerful document about the search for a "usable" German past - especially in light of the East German film censorship debacle of 1965.
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