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Good Bye Lenin. Hello Target.

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How far do you take a lie to protect someone?

Click to watch the trailer

Alex Kerner (played by Daniel Brühl), his sister and their mother lived in East Germany. But Kerner’s mother, a faithful socialist, had a heart attack and fell into a coma the night the Berlin wall came down. When she awoke eight months later, Kerner wanted to keep her from a second heart attack, which her doctor said could kill her. So he followed her doctor’s advice and recreated his own version of East Germany to protect his mother.

This dark comedy is funny because of Kerner ‘s success in creating the illusion of an ever-excelling East Germany. It gets funnier when Kerner invites others into the sham. But it’s funniest and touching at the end. I won’t say exactly why, but it involves an East Germany accepting refugees from the West escaping the ravages of consumption.

Along the way lies get told, naturally the lies must be multiplied and amplified, televised and dramatized. It is clear the untruths cannot continue, and truths begin washing through the story. Conversations that sidestepped truth and walked circles around reality eventually succumb to both love and trust.

I could not help but ask what illusions I create for myself and invite others to be part of. We all need the kind of conversations where truth is spoken, no matter how it seems to change reality.


Written by kirkistan

October 31, 2010 at 5:26 pm

2 Responses

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  1. Sounds like a good option for a future group movie night. It also reminds me of a French philosopher named Baudrillard who hypothesized that there was no such thing as reality anymore, only hyperrealities or Simulacra, which are created by society using the symbolic in place of actual truth [think: the Matrix.] There are some interesting themes running here. That which is comfortable or desirable used to sedate and disarm us and disguise that which is true.

    Jon M.

    November 1, 2010 at 11:45 am

  2. Certainly Kerner created his own reality and lots of people said “Ja!” to it. But it wasn’t the real reality. And in the end, the real reality intruded. As often happens.

    Thanks for the comment.


    November 1, 2010 at 11:53 am

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