Good Bye, Lenin!, 2004

The movie, Good Bye, Lenin!, released in 2004, is a German film. It is about the fall of the Berlin Wall and the overtaking of Eastern German civilization by Western German civilization. Germany’s civilization goes from being a socialist community to a capitalist community. It tells a story of a mother who has a heart attack because of the shock of change. In a coma for eight months, she is clueless as to what has happened to Germany. When out of her coma her son and daughter trick her into thinking that nothing has changed at all over the last eight months.

Like Quiz Show this movie shares a similar theme of deception. However, Good Bye Lenin! has the same theme but it is different because of the characters’ motives. In this film the kids lie and deceive their mom because they do not want to hurt her or jeopardize her life. All their intentions are good as opposed to the Quiz Show in which they lie basically for money and higher television ratings.

Throughout the whole movie Alex Kerner and his sister Ariane are trying to deceive their mother Christiane into thinking that Germany is the same as it was before she has her heart attack. It is Alex’s idea to trick their mother and comes up with several creative ways to do so. For example, his mom loves “Spreewald Pickles”. Attempting to find them he has no luck in any of the grocery stores, because after the change all the local grocery stores were wiped out of their original products. Alex wants to make sure everything is as normal and perfect for his mother. He looks in trash bins and all over in attempt to find an empty “Spreewald” jar. After looking for a very long time, Alex finally finds a jar. He cleans it and fills it with another brand of pickles deceiving his mother. Alex would go out of his way to make to do the smallest thing to make his mother happy. Going out of his way and showing compassion was Alex’s way of protecting his mother from reality even if it included some deception.

Another example of an inconvenience that drives Alex to deceive his mother again is when she decides that she wants to watch television. Freaking out at first, Alex and his friend Denis film and edit their own news. They do this so that Christiane will feel like she is being updated by the news when she really isn’t. Anytime Christiane would question Alex or see something peculiar Alex and Denis would film a segment explaining why those odd things existed. Every time there was a scare of his mom finding out, Alex would do everything he needed to do to cover it up.

Overall, this film is all about deception motivated by love. Alex is a loving, caring son who goes extremely out of his way to make his mother feel safe, healthy, and happy.

 

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