A Love in Germany

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A Love in Germany
A Love in Germany FilmPoster.jpeg
US poster
Directed by Andrzej Wajda
Produced by Artur Brauner
Written by Rolf Hochhuth
Agnieszka Holland
Based on A Love in Germany 
by Rolf Hochhuth
Starring Hanna Schygulla
Piotr Lysak
Armin Mueller-Stahl
Ralf Wolter
Music by Michel Legrand
Cinematography Igor Luther
Edited by Halina Prugar-Ketling
Distributed by Scotia
Triumph Films
Release dates
  • October 27, 1983 (1983-10-27) (West Germany)
Running time
132 minutes
Country West Germany
Language German

Eine Liebe in Deutschland (A Love in Germany) is a 1983 feature film directed by Andrzej Wajda.

The film is based on the novel by Rolf Hochhuth about a woman who commits adultery with a prisoner of war while her husband serves as a soldier during World War II. A Love in Germany, featuring many popular German actors, was produced by German film producer Artur Brauner and German broadcaster ZDF.


The story takes place in a little German town at the border to Switzerland. The owner of the local fruit-and-vegetables shop has been called up. His shop has a key function for the town's supply situation. His customers know from World War I how rationing can make the owner of such a shop very rich if only he's egoistic enough to get corrupted by well-heeled customers who don't care whether their poorer country fellowmen's families starve. So when his wife Paulina starts to run the shop alone, her character is subsequently of public interest for all citizens who are concerned about the well-being of their families during the ongoing war. Paulina shares the fate of other soldier's wives who constantly face the fear her husband might return crippled, maimed or not at all. But because her husband's shop is highly important for the town's community, she gets somebody who can ease her working load. She is also luckier than other women for she is still young and attractive. So is the prisoner of war named Stanislaus who must serve her. She obviously finds him handsome and relishes that he has to obey all her commands. So she decides she doesn't need to be one of the lonesome wives anymore. When she seduces him she finds him very virile and they sometimes celebrate their love even literally in the open. Finally a town's official informs her that her evident bliss leads other women to doubts about her integrity. Still she doesn't let go of her love affair although the town official keeps on warning her that under the prevailing Nazi laws her adultery is punishable as "Rassenschande". Paulina keeps on putting the Polish POW in lethal danger until he is finally taken to court and sentenced to death. Paulina is imprisoned for two years. Decades later her son and her grandson visit the still existing little town in order to confront the man who warned Paulina repeatedly but in the end let her go down. The both of them are appalled when they realise he still lives in the very town where the citizens forced him to take action on Paulina and he doesn't hide.


The film was made 12 years after Willy Brandt, incumbent Chancellor of Germany (Federal Republic of Germany) had signed the Treaty of Warsaw (1970) and moreover had knelt down in Warsaw (a gesture known as Warschauer Kniefall).


Unfortunately, the story barely indicated the plot and described it generally and briefly, using only selected details. I, meanwhile, was unable to reconstruct real life in a small German town during the war. I didn't know the realities, and had to resort to fiction.The German audience sensed this unreality at once, which afforded them the opportunity to reject, with relief, the problems touched upon in the film

— Andrzej Wajda – Andrzej Wajda's Official Homepage [1]


  1. [1]

External links