The Lives of Others

2006 German film by Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck
(Redirected from Das Leben der Anderen)

The Lives of Others (original German: Das Leben der Anderen) is a 2006 film about the monitoring of the cultural scene of East Berlin by agents of the Stasi, the GDR's secret police. The plot follows the story of protagonist Gerd Wiesler, a very efficient, practical Stasi member as he watches his target, an artist by the name of Georg Dreyman and his partner Christa-Maria Sieland. As Wiesler looks for suspicious behaviour in Dreyman, he finds himself engrossed in the lives of the artist and his partner, and begins to see a different way to live - one that involves love, warmth, laughter and faith. Von Donnesrmarck uses strong juxtaposition to show the show the difference between the lives of Wiesler and Dreyman, and editing, incluing doorway and high angle shots, to make the viewer feel as though they too, are watching Dreyman. Von Donnersmarck uses a memorable soundtrack, symbolic physical setting, contrasting characters and a very intimate portrayal of both story lines to explore themes surrounding love, oppression, betrayal, and integrity.

Directed and written by Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck.
Before the Fall of the Berlin Wall, East Germany's Secret Police Listened to Your Secrets. (taglines)

All quotes are originally in German and translated


  • Sozialismus muss irgendwo anfangen
  • Why are sitting at this table?-you're an officer.
  • Socialism has to start somewhere.


[last lines]
Book Vendor: 29.80 [DM]. Shall I gift wrap it?
Wiesler: No, it's for me.



German: Kann jemand, der diese Musik gehört hat, ich meine wirklich gehört hat, ein schlechter Mensch sein? English: Can someone who has heard this music, I mean truly heard it, really be a bad person?


  • Was hat ein Regisseur, der nicht inszeniert darf? nicht mehr als ein Filmvorfuehrer ohne Film, ein Mueller ohne Mehl, er hat gar nichts mehr!


  • Before the Fall of the Berlin Wall, East Germany's Secret Police Listened to Your Secrets.
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