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The Lives of Others

Das Leben der Anderen

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„The Lives of Others” has one of the most erudite screenplays of the year. It is 1984: Glasnost is a million miles away and a government minister with a wandering eye, used to exploiting his position to eliminate rivals in politics or love, takes a fancy to Christa-Maria Sieland, a beautiful, popular and very attractive actress. She is living with one of the country's most popular - and loyal - playwrights, Georg Dreyman. While fellow writers have fallen out of favour, Georg has curried connections and is feted as a cultural superstar. However, the couple's apparently safe little world is about to be turned upside down. The agent of turmoil is the perfectly named Captain Gerd Wiesler, a grim, expressionless, rather mousy Stasi agent convinced that no one is ever truly innocent of anything. Within hours of the minister's wishes reaching a subordinate's ear, Wiesler's team have bugged the playwright's apartment and are listening in on everything in an attempt to find evidence of, well, anything.