Good Bye Lenin!, Wolfgang Becker (2003)

Perhaps a bit too charming, but nevertheless effective and affecting. In East Berlin in early 1989, the gung-ho socialist mother of a doting son has a heart attack and goes into a coma. When she wakes up eight months later, the doctors say she mustn’t be agitated, but meanwhile, the world’s changed. Doting son goes to extreme — and ha ha comical — lengths to maintain the illusion that the GDR still exists. But as the charade goes on, it gradually becomes clear that it’s the son, not the mother, who is afraid to let go of the past and move into the future. A lovely instantiation of the idea that history isn’t a set of objective facts but a series of intentional constructions.

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