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90 Ratings

Germany Pale Mother

Deutschland bleiche Mutter

Directed by Helma Sanders-Brahms
West Germany, 1980
Drama, History, Avant-Garde


Germany 1939. Hans and Lene marry the day before the war breaks out. During a bombing raid their daughter Anna is born. Hans survives the war but he is not the same person as in 1939, and he and Lene find it difficult to live together again.

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Germany Pale Mother Directed by Helma Sanders-Brahms

Critics reviews

The way these experiences take a palpably physical toll on protagonist Lene dominates the final act in a way that might seem overly symbolic on paper were it not for the headlong fearlessness of Fassbinder veteran Eva Mattes’s performance.
July 03, 2015
The fairytale’s magic is accentuated by a mobile camera whose sweeping tracks and pans underscore the strange exhilaration of Anna and Lene’s journey. Historical ironies are never far from the surface, especially in intercut documentary sequences in which surging aerial shots of ruined cities heighten the tragedy of wartime devastation, while also echoing the euphoria of Lene and Anna’s untrammelled flight.
May 28, 2015
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