Reel Women in East German Film

DEFA Film Library
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29 videos in this collection

All My Girls
Despite his lack of enthusiasm, film student Ralf is assigned to make a documentary about a team of six women workers at a light bulb factory in Berlin. At first,…
And Your Love Too
On August 13th, 1961--the night the Berlin Wall goes up--three people must make a decision that will change their lives forever... Upon learning of the building of the Wall, the…
Carla
When she discovers her students are hiding their true thoughts and feelings, Carla (Jutta Hoffmann), a young and idealistic teacher at the start of her career, goes against the routine…
Castles & Cottages
This two-part epic traces the development of a manor and farm in Mecklenburg, from the flight of its aristocratic landowners before the advancing Soviet troops in 1945, to just after…
Destinies of Women
Berlin 1952, seven years after WWII. Four women are looking for a good man and happiness in the divided city. Their destinies are loosely connected through one person: the West…
Divided Heaven
After a breakdown, Rita returns to her childhood village in 1961. As she recovers, she remembers the past two years: her love for the chemist Manfred, ten years her senior;…
Girls in Gingham
A moving saga focusing on the women in a family spanning three generations and almost 70 years of German history, from the Wilhelmine period through the end of WWII. Guste…
Her Third
After having two children with two different men, a newly single and liberated Margit discovers herself. Her entertaining amorous pursuit of a colleague is a testament to the evolving independence…
Herzsprung
In the little town of Herzsprung almost nothing has changed since German unification - except a rise in unemployment. Johanna, a young mother and widow, becomes one of the unemployed…
Hot Summer
For summer vacation, two groups of high school students hitchhike to the Baltic Sea, where fun and trouble mix to create ties of friendship and love. After DEFA made a…
Jana and Jan
Fall 1989: Jan is almost 16. Caught while trying to escape to West Germany, he is transferred from prison to a juvenile detention center. Here, he meets Jana ... and…
K├Ąthe Kollwitz: Images of a Life
Kathe Kollwitz is 47-years-old, already a well-known artist in Germany and abroad. Peter, her youngest son, volunteers to join the German army in WWI and dies two weeks later. This…
Marriage in the Shadows
The first German feature film to explicitly address the persecution of Jews in Nazi Germany, Marriage in the Shadows called on Germans to accept collective responsibility for the crimes of…
Solo Sunny
This smash hit, which captures the East German "70's style" in its gritty-glitzy visuals and its catchy soundtrack, is ranked by film critics among the 100 Most Significant German Films…
Stars
Stationed in a secluded Bulgarian village in 1943, Walter, an artist and sergeant in the Wehrmacht, lives an almost idyllic life far away from the war. Then one day a…
Sun Seekers
A socialist story of "atoms for peace" and compulsory labor in an East German uranium mine under Soviet control. Banned at Soviet insistence, it impresses even today with its political…
The Bicycle
Susanne is a young, single mother who lives a somewhat alternative, unstructured lifestyle. After quitting her job, she finds herself in trouble financially and attempts a minor insurance fraud to…
The Dove on the Roof
The engineer Linda falls in love with not with one, but two of the men on her construction team, in a film that raises questions about the importance of work,…
The Flying Dutchman
In order to escape her narrow and restrictive life, Senta, the daughter of a rich shipowner, seeks refuge in her fantasies and dreams. In this realm of imagination, a bold…
The Legend of Paul and Paula
Author Ulrich Plenzdorf and director Heiner Carow winningly portray everyday life in East Berlin in a passionate, but star-crossed love story. Featuring the music of the East German cult rock…
The Mistake
It is 1988. Jacob (Gottfried John), from Hamburg in West Germany, falls in love with Elisabeth (Angelica Domrose) in East Germany. When they secretly meet in East Berlin, it seems…
The Murderers are Among Us
In 1945, after three years in a concentration camp, the artist Susanne Wallner (Hildegard Knef) returns to a Berlin in ruins. Shot in the rubble of Berlin just a year…
The Rabbit is Me
The Rabbit Is Me was intended to encourage discussion of the democratization of East German society. A sardonic portrayal of the GDR's judicial system, the film was condemned as an…
The Story of a Young Couple
A young couple - both actors - live and work in Berlin before the Wall is built. Agnes is on location in East Berlin, and her husband Jochen works at…
The Woman and the Stranger
Karl and Richard, two German soldiers captured by the Russians in World War I, become very close friends--so close that Richard shares intimate stories about his wife, Anna. Through these…
Too Young for Love
Susanne is 18 years old. Everybody appreciates her work in the textile company; but nobody, including Lutz, whom she is in love with, takes note of her as a woman.…
Trace of Stones
Foreman Balla is the self-proclaimed king of a massive construction site. His co-workers stick close to him, like musketeers, as long as he makes sure they are paid. But things…
Until Death Do Us Part
Scenes from an East German marriage. A young couple, Sonya and Jens, are very much in love. They get married and have a child. When Sonya wants to go back…
Winter Ade
Shortly before GDR's collapse, Helke Misselwitz traveled by train from one end of the country to the other interviewing East German women of different ages and backgrounds. In this documentary…

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