Good Bye Lenin

by Chris Bertram on September 14, 2003

I blogged a while back about wanting to see Good Bye Lenin, and I finally managed to do so last night., so this is just a minor update. I’d recommend it: it is warm, funny, touching and humane and I managed the suspension of disbelief a lot better than I’d anticipated from contemplating the idea of the film. I was surprised to see that the auditorium was packed. I have the good fortune to have a small cinema at the end of my street (how long it will survive, I don’t know) and I’d been to see Veronica Guerin a couple of weeks earlier in the same place on the same night of the week and there had been just three of us watching. Odd that GBL should be so much more popular.



DhB 09.14.03 at 9:27 pm

Same here: I saw GBL 2 months ago in Italy and the cinema was also full in that case.

Maybe it is because, even if it’s an european film, you still expect it to be light, fun and easily digestible. No one had heard/read anything special about it, but everyone wanted to see it .

It was, in fact,light, fun and easily digested.


Maria 09.15.03 at 1:13 pm

Snap! I saw it this weekend and the (central Parisian) cinema was packed. It’s true – without much in the way of advance reviews, I think the subject matter was something people are genuinely curious about. In fact, it really made me think how few films there have been so far (I think) about that historic moment. Funny how the intervening years seem to have gone so quickly, and we’ve slipped straight from awe at the events to something approaching nostalgia.

I didn’t get all the jokes because my french’s not quite up to taking in subtitles a mile a minute. But so many of the laughs were from visual gags, that I think this must go a long way to explaining the film’s popularity outside Germany.

GBL was also much less cruel to its characters than I’d anticipated. Seems to me that straight satire must be far easier to do than a genuinely funny but affectionate film like GBL.

Don’t miss it!

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