I often hear people’s complaints about the difficulty of learning a foreign language. Honestly, it can be hard and quite challenging. But, I have a secret tip: it’s called a movie. For my German lovers out there, I recommend these four movies that will not only keep you entertained but it will also help you enrich that vocabulary list.
Almanya – Willkommen in Deutschland (Almanya – Welcome to Germany)
Welcome to Germany is a movie that will never become boring to watch. Being a second-generation German-Turkish, young Cenk has a hard time defining his bicultural identity. Having been born and raised in Germany, he doesn’t know much about his Turkish ancestors nor anything that it has to do with the Turkish tradition, language, values, and beliefs. That’s when his cousin steps up and tells him the long story of how their grandfather immigrated to Germany in the search of a better life for him and his young family.
Good Bye, Lenin
It’s October 1989, just days before the fall of the Berlin Wall, an event that reunited a nation and reshaped communist Germany. Anti-socialist Alex Kerner lives quite an uneventful life in the East with his sister Ariane and pro-communist mother, Christine, who has dedicated her life to supporting the Socialist Unity Party and advocating for their actions. Their monotonous routine ends abruptly when Christine suffers a heart attack and as a consequence falls into a deep coma. During her time in the hospital, Germany’s reunification takes place. Scared that this will shock her to her cores and cause her another attack, the family decides to keep the illusion of the German Democratic Republic alive. Her bedridden condition helps them prevent her from knowing about the great changes that had happened in their homeland.
Er ist wieder da (Look who’s back)
Have you ever wondered what would have happened if Adolf Hitler had come back to life in the 21st century? It’s 2014 and the great führer wakes up in his former bunker. As he strolls down the street and tries to make sense of everything happening around him, people are delighted by his “impression” as they are entirely unaware that he is the real thing. His impersonation is so accurate that it catches the attention of a television station where he is offered to host a comedy program. It is completely hilarious to watch the real Hitler discovering modern Germany and showing his complete disappointment, while the whole nation laughs at his “jokes.”
Fack Ju Göhte (an intentional misspelling of F*ck you, Goethe)
This is without a doubt my favorite German movie of all time. The plot revolves around, Zeki Müller, a thief, who decides to bury his stolen money in a construction site to keep them safe. Little did he know that by the time he came back to collect them, his money would stay buried a couple of feet under the newly constructed high school. Zeki sees an opportunity to get to the money by applying for a job in the school, and due to a small mix-up, he ends up becoming a substitute teacher. And let me tell you, he faces something much harder than a burglary: moody teenagers.