Germany, Pale Mother DVD


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Region 2 DVD (may not be viewable outside Europe).


Set during the Third Reich and its aftermath, this lyrical, harrowing tale of love and war is a neglected classic of New German cinema.

Hans and Lene scarcely have time to meet and marry before Hans is sent away to fight, leaving Lene to give birth during an air raid and struggle through the war with a baby daughter. Based on director and writer Helma Sanders-Brahms’ mother’s experience, the film explores the devastating impact of politics on family life.

Eva Mattes (Lene) gives a brilliant, fearless performance, with the film casting a powerful emotional spell which is intensified by a delicate, plaintive piano score. German critics savaged the film at its premiere, baulking at its ‘subjective’ female take on recent history. Cut by 30 minutes for cinema release, only now has it been restored to its impressive original form and released for the first time on DVD.

Bonus Features:

  • Germany Pale Mother: original director’s cut (Helma Sanders-Brahms, 1980, 145 minutes)
  • Hermann Mein Vater (Helma Sanders-Brahms, 1987, 50 mins)
  • Extensive booklet with essays and complete film credits

Cast and Crew:

Director: Helma Sanders-Brahms (Laputa, My Heart is Mine Alone, Under The Beach’s Cobbles)

Cast: Eva Mattes (Enemy at the Gates, Woyzeck, A Man Like Eva) and Ernst Jacobi (The White Ribbon, The Tin Drum)

Awards and Reviews:

1980 –Berlin International Film Festival, Golden Berlin Bear - Nominated

1980 - Créteil International Women's Film Festival, Grand Prix - Won


Product Details

  • Eva Mattes,
  • Ernst Jacobi
  • Helma Sanders-Brahms
  • 2
Sound Information:
  • Dolby Digital
Number of Discs:
  • 1
Main Language:
  • German
Run Time:
  • 151 mins approx.
  • BFI
Theatrical Release Year:
  • 1980
  • 15

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