Cate Blanchett as: Lena Brandt
Directed by: Steven Soderbergh
Selected Cast: George Clooney, Tobey Maguire & Jack Thompson
Written by: Paul Attanasio & Joseph Kanon
Release Year: 2006
Genre: Drama / Mystery / Thriller
MPAA Rating: R
Berlin, July, 1945. Journalist Jake Geismer arrives to cover the Potsdam conference, issued a captain’s uniform for easier passage. He also wants to find Lena, an old flame who’s now a prostitute desperate to get out of Berlin. He discovers that the driver he’s assigned, a cheerful down-home sadist named Corporal Tully, is Lena’s keeper. When the body of a murdered man washes up in Potsdam (within the Russian sector), Jake may be the only person who wants to solve the crime: U.S. personnel are busy finding Nazis to bring to trial, the Russians and the Americans are looking for German rocket scientists, and Lena has her own secrets.
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• Coming soon!
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• Lena Brandt: “An affair has more rules than a marriage.”
• Lena Brandt: “You can never really get out of Berlin.”
• Filmed in USA (view all.)
• Nominated for Oscar. Another 2 wins & 2 nominations (view all.)
• Cate studied Marlene Dietrich and Ingrid Bergman in order to play a German character. Ingrid Bergman, however, was Swedish.
• The film was shot as if it had been made in 1945. Only studio back lots, sets and local Los Angeles locations were used. No radio microphones were used, the film was lit with only incandescent lights and period lenses were used on the cameras. The actors were directed to perform in a presentational, stage style. The only allowance was the inclusion of nudity, violence and cursing which would have been forbidden by the Production Code.
• Director Steven Soderbergh, wishing to shoot this film the old Hollywood way, banned the use of sophisticated zoom lenses used by today’s cinematographers, returning to the fixed focal-length lenses used in the past. Furthermore, only incandescent lights were used which provided harsh, unnatural lighting. There were also no wireless body microphones, which would allow the faintest whispers to be heard, on set. Sound was recorded the old-fashioned way, with a hand-operated boom mike held above the actors head, which consequently forced the actors to speak in loud, crisp English.
• The movie poster is an homage to a poster for the classic Warner Bros film Casablanca (1942), as is the closing scene at the airport.
• Once or twice in the film adverts for Persil washing powder are seen, before Lena gets her “Persilschien”.