Wednesday, 25 June 2008

Review: "The Lives of Others"

I watched this for the first time on DVD last night, somehow having not made the time until now despite all the great things I'd heard about it.

Generally I was very impressed. I thought the film's portrayal of a fearful society living under the Stasi and the look of East Germany was very good. Whilst there was definite fear, it was kept to a realistically limited level and the drab, practicality of everything in the East, from buildings to canteens, was fitting. The story itself was generally believable, although the change in the central character occurred a bit too fast on screen (although in reality it presumably took longer). The characters especially were all very real, and the actions they took spoke of real people instead of cinematic heroes. And for that they seem all the more heroic. The acting and directing was generally very good and the film managed to be ponderous over its plot whilst not getting lost. The ending was excellent, really hitting home how much people were under surveillance and the fear and mistrust this instills.

Anyway, again, trying not to give away any of the plot for Telf's sake, this is a film that is well worth seeing for its realism and general, across the board, quality.


TheTelf said...

Don't hold back on my regard. I'll generally just not read posts reviewing films I haven't seen until I've seen the film, and it's my problem if I see something I shouldn't. Don't censor yourself just because of my weird viewing tendencies. :D

James said...


Not really, and I don't mind not describing elements of the plot, all I really want to say in a review is whether I thought the film was good and rough generalisation as to why.