Classic and Famous Films in German
What is a “classic” film?
Not every film is a classic, but the German-speaking countries, and Germany in particular, have made many strong contributions to the films of world cinema that are considered groundbreaking or notable in some way. Our definition of “classic” includes any film — old or new — that is notable for its cinematic originality, its story, or any other elements that make that film outstanding.
From the earliest days of motion pictures, Germany has played an important role in world cinema. As time went by, Berlin (Babelsberg) and Munich grew to become Hollywood’s biggest competitors. Many filmmakers and actors from Austria and Switzerland also ended up in Berlin (and later Hollywood).
More recently, a new generation of filmmakers from the German-speaking countries has been producing excellent films, and some of them have won Academy Awards and other film honors.
Also see Hollywood Films Made in Germany.
Classic German Films from the Silent Era
Anders als die Anderen (D, 1919, Different from the Others)
Asphalt (D, 1929)
Berlin - Die Sinfonie der Großstadt (D, 1927, Berlin - Symphony of a Great City)
Büchse der Pandora, Die (D, 1929, Pandora’s Box)
Cabinet des Dr. Caligari, Das (D, 1920, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari)
Golem, Der (D, 1920, The Golem)
indische Grabmal, Das (D, 1921, The Indian Tomb)
letzte Mann, Der (D, 1924, The Last Laugh)
Nosferatu - eine Symphonie des Grauens (D, 1922)
Orlacs Hände (D, 1924, The Hands of Orlac)
Tabu (D, 1931, Taboo)
Classic German Films (after 1929)
Aguirre, der Zorn Gottes (D, 1972, Aguirre, The Wrath of God)
blaue Engel, Der (D, 1930, The Blue Angel)
Blechtrommel, Die (D, 1979, The Tin Drum)
Boot, Das (D, 1981, The Boat)
Brücke, Die (D, 1959, The Bridge)
Ehe der Maria Braun, Die (1979, The Marriage of Maria Braun)
Fälscher, Die (A/D, 2007, The Counterfeiters)
Fitzcarraldo (D, 1982)
Himmel über Berlin, Der (D, 1987, Wings of Desire)
Hitlerjunge Salomon (D, 1990, Europa Europa)
Leben der Anderen, Das (D, 2006, The Lives of Others)
Lola Rennt (D, 1998, Run Lola Run)
M (D, 1931, M - Eine Stadt sucht einen Mörder)
Macht der Bilder, Die (D, 1993, The Wonderful, Horrible Life of Leni Riefenstahl)
Männer (D, 1985, Men)
Mörder sind unter uns, Die (D, 1946, The Murderers Are Among Us)
Münchausen (D, 1943, Baron Münchausen)
Olympia (D, 1936-38)
Schuh des Manitu, Der (D, 2001, The Shoe of the Manitou)
(T)Raumschiff Surprise (D, 2004, Spaceship Surprise)
Triumph des Willen (D, 1934, Triumph of the Will)
Wunder von Bern, Das (D, 2003, The Miracle of Bern)
- Hollywood Films Made in Germany - New and classic movies shot in Germany
- Ufa and Studio Babelsberg - Established in 1912, this studio complex near Berlin became Germany's main film production site.
- An Ufa Chronology (1891-pres.) - A historical timeline that includes world cinema and other German studios.
- German Cinema - From the German Way book
- Famous Germans, Austrians and Swiss
- Famous Graves - The graves and cemeteries of the famous
MORE > German-Hollywood Connection
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