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Comedian Harmonists (The Harmonists)

Comedian Harmonists (The Harmonists) (1999)



Average Rating: 6.9/10
Critic Reviews: 11
Fresh: 9 | Rotten: 2

No consensus yet.



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Average Rating: 3.8/5
User Ratings: 965

My Rating

Movie Info

Joseph Vilsmaier (Stalingrad and Brother of Sleep) directed this fact-based German musical drama about a popular barbershop sextet in Nazi Germany of the '30s. In 1927, musician Harry Frommermann (Ulrich Noethen), attracted to music-shop assistant Erna (Meret Becker), joins ambitious vocalist Robert Biberti (Ben Becker) in forming a vocal group with arranger Erwin (Kai Wiesinger) and Bulgarian cafe-singer Ari (Max Tidof). As their fame increases, the authorities, who object to the Jews in the


Art House & International, Drama

Jul 2, 2002

Miramax Films

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All Critics (43) | Top Critics (14) | Fresh (29) | Rotten (7)

The movie is history as kitsch, not quite on the Life is Beautiful level of manipulation, but clumsy.

March 19, 2002 Full Review Source: Globe and Mail
Globe and Mail
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The film is filled with stylish renditions of lively, funny and sentimental songs.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A true story from the Nazi era, it deftly fuses politics and show business.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Detroit News
Detroit News
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The story of the Comedian Harmonists, who brought to the waning days of Weimar a bubbly frivolity, is a rich one. Rich enough to keep you watching and wanting to know more.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: New York Magazine/Vulture
New York Magazine/Vulture
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Performances aside, the movie is dull and perfunctory.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Village Voice
Village Voice
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Given the suffering created by the Nazis, the fate of the Harmonists ranks low on the scale. But as one of the countless little stories that add up to the plague of Nazism, they deserve an entry in the chronicle of despair.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

... a grandly realized and skillfully executed melodrama that seems all too familiar.

April 30, 2007 Full Review Source: Seattle Weekly
Seattle Weekly

Entertaining, poignant, and filled with catchy music.

February 5, 2004 Full Review Source:

A very entertaining true story.

January 17, 2003 Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid
Combustible Celluloid

A wonderful film which should not be missed.

June 5, 2002 Full Review Source: Boxoffice Magazine
Boxoffice Magazine

This German film, based on the true story of this legendary vocal ensemble, shows how politics colors everything: no creative soul can ever be apolitical.

March 5, 2002 Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice
Spirituality and Practice

A very satisfying film that should delight intended audiences.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Film Journal International
Film Journal International

Mildly engrossing but, ultimately, the sort of film that demands more attention than it should, The Harmonists resonates with barely a dull thud.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Austin Chronicle
Austin Chronicle

The charismatic quality of the group, the performing magic that made them the big stars they were, is not convincingly demonstrated and that is a major weakness in the film.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source:

There was something emotionally flat and unconvincing about this story.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

If you're in the mood for good musical entertainment, but don't want to spend $100 at the theater, go see The Harmonists.

January 1, 2000
Matt's Movie Reviews

The Harmonists has a finale that will be appreciated by anyone who loved The Sound of Music. As they say, there won't be a dry eye in the house.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Sacramento Bee
Sacramento Bee

The music -- digitally remastered recordings of the original performers -- is nothing to get worked up over, but the passion and fervor that created it was truly amazing in the face of personal and military terror.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: E! Online
E! Online

What we have here is a sort of 'before and after' photograph of an era. The details make this specific story interesting, if not riveting.

January 1, 2000
Jam! Movies

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Foreign Titles

  • Comedian Harmonists (DE)
  • Comedian Harmonists (UK)
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