Habermann (2010)

War is over. Vengeance has begun.

"We are determined to get rid of these Germans forever..."
Edvard Beneš, President of Czechoslovakia

"You will have no difficulties from our side.
Go right on and prepare it."

Franklin D. Roosevelt, U.S. President

German mill owner spends WWII trying to save his wife, daughter and Czech workers from Nazi terror, but faces his own tragic end in an unexpected way. Based on true events surrounding the expulsion of Sudeten Germans from Czechoslovakia in 1945.

"The events happened more than sixty years ago, but their effects can be felt even today. If we want to understand the present, we have to know what happened in the past. The film starts with the expulsion: we know from the start how this story will end – there is no escape. Then we are shown the events that led up to it. The story of HABERMANN ends after the "expulsion" of the Germans from the Sudetenland area bordering Germany and Czechoslovakia in 1945, and remains today one of the darkest chapters in the relationship between Germans and Czechs. The atrocities perpetrated in the course of the expulsion are a taboo to his date. Many Czechs do not want to be reminded of it, many Germans insist that they have been wronged bitterly at the time and that nobody has ever had to pay for this. There is now a new young generation that wants information about the past." - director Juraj Herz
[German with English subtitles]


  1. Hello Charleybrown,

    I'm so excited to see you introducing German period feature films!! I'm courious, what you'd think of them other than the synopsis. But I have to say, that they are rather overly placed during WW II. There have been a number of other German periods recently. Here are the most well known:

    Goethe! (Much like "Shakespeare in Love" and pretty but without beeing that witty or clever. Or that genuinely heartfelt even.)

    Effi (after Theodor Fontane's novel)

    Die Buddenbrooks (After Thomas Mann's novel)

    All watchable, if not that great. but my favourites:


    Kabale & Liebe (after Schiller's Play)

    official page: http://www.delphi-film.de/de/home/repertoire/langfilme/kabaleundliebe/fotos.php

    Das Gelübde/The Vow (About German romantic Poet Clemens Brentano)
    Synopsis: http://www.berlinale.de/external/de/filmarchiv/doku_pdf/20080066.pdf

    Geliebter Johann, geliebte Anna (About the younger brother of the Austrian Emperor Franz I loving the postman's daughter Anna Plochl)

    Das weiße Band/The white Ribbon

    And perhaps you know some of the faces by now: Love in thoughts

    The obvious problem: I cannot say, if any of those films will ever be available for english speaking audiences. Though I am surprised, that films like "Berlin '36", which didn't get that much attention in Germany, should be internationally marketed, while high profile features like "Effi" and "The Buddenbrooks" should not.

    Looking forward to hearing from you.

  2. @Anonymous
    I don't usually post about films in other languages simply because I'm English but once in a while, if I notice an interesting foreign film that is available with subtitles, then I'll include it! The main reason that I posted those 2 films is that one of the movie blogs that I follow happened to post the trailers and I noticed that they were period dramas which caught my eye!

    You wanted to know what I thought besides the synopsis? However, I don't usually write reviews myself but rather pass on the information to others and I've not seen those films to be able to offer an opinion.

    Thanks for your suggestions...I have heard of Goethe! and Effi in passing but didn't know much about them. I did post about The White Ribbon: http://enchantedserenityperiodfilms.blogspot.com/2009/12/white-ribbon-2009.html
    I missed the chance to see it when it came to an independent theatre but perhaps I'll be able to watch it on DVD or online at some point.

    I noticed the actor from 'Ladies in Lavender' in "Love in Thoughts' :)

    I just posted 'The Poll Diaries' and 'Buddenbrooks' since I was able to find more information on them being available with subtitles! I would mention you by name except I don't know your name!

  3. @ a href #c3873007039354415905 >Charleybrown /a>

    Hi again.

    I've seen your exciting posts for the "Poll diaries" and the "Buddenbrooks". I'm always enthralled to know, how films concerning "national treasures" such as "Goethe" or "The Buddenbrooks" are able to relate to other people and if they are able to stand the test against literary adaptations traditionally done so well by the British. Seen with the eyes of persons probably less biased than me. You see, most period dramas here are either WW II related or based on a novel. So I have found it quite reviting, that after P&P05 there obviously must have been an idea in the German film industry to do period drama for it's own sake. Hence "Goethe!" or "Young Goethe in Love" as it was called when it was shown during the Miami international film festival 2011.


    Sorry to have missed your post about "the white Ribbon" via the search engine. Next time I will immediatly try your advisedly designed film index... ;o) Anyways, I can really recommend this film. Although it's not graphic in anyway (which is part of its disturbing effect) you may find parts of the dialogue (esp. between doctor and nurse) hard to bear. But it should still be worth the DVD rental.

    I have found some other upcoming feature films or DVDs not yet on your list, that you may find of interest:

    Pope Joan (shot twice, in German and english)

    The Monk (after Lewis' novel. Not yet in English, but I really think it will be marketed internationally with an actor like Vincent Cassel at hand)

    The Silence of Joan of Arc (Starring Clemence Poesy)

    who forgot to click on the right profile for the last comment, thinks it kind of you to ask but does not necessarily need to be mentioned ;o)

  4. @anna
    Hi Anna,
    Thanks for the film suggestions. You remind me that there are so many more out there that we don't know about (whether in English or another language)!



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