Anonyma - Eine Frau in Berlin (A Woman in Berlin) Reviews
Hillers, played namelessly by Nina Hoss, undergoes a series of brutal rapes after the Soviets roll into the streets of Berlin, which has become a city of rubble, populated by women, children and old men unfit for military service. The women (and girls) are taken by force or threat of lethal force and are utterly helpless in their hopeless situation. Hillers then decides to take matters into her own hands as best as she can in the situation that presents itself to her and tries to make sure that she decides who is to rape her, thereby giving herself what little control she is able to assign to herself. In doing so, she "enlists" the "protection" of a Soviet Officer, by offering herself to him. Over time, the officer and Hillers form a strange relationship forged in no small part by the utter chaos that surrounds them both.
'Eine Frau in Berlin' covers some rough ground and it's a brave move by the producers to film the project in the first place. The location, vehicles, uniforms and people all look incredibly authentic and the viewer really does get the feel of what it was like to be a civilian on a Berlin street in the final weeks of the war. In that respect, it's a great companion piece to the excellent 'Downfall', a film which refused to touch upon the subject of mass rape at all.
However, the film isn't half as harsh as it should have been, given the fact that the Soviet soldiers raped females "from 8 to 80" and one feels that there was still a lot left unsaid. The film is also confined to the Berliner's ordeals, which I suppose is to be expected. However, it wasn't just in Berlin, or Germany that Soviet troops unleashed their base actions. Throughout Poland, Hungary, Latvia and other countries, including parts of Russia as well, women were subject to this barbarity. There are even stories of women from "liberated" concentration camps being raped too.
Of course, just like it's wrong to suggest that all German soldiers were nazis, it's equally wrong to suggest that all Red Army personnel engaged in wanton rape and murder and the film goes some way to showing this.
In the end, the vast majority of Russians, like every soldier in WWII regardless of their nation, simply wanted the war to be over so that they could go home.
A Woman in Berlin (German: Eine Frau in Berlin) is an autobiographical account of the period from 20 April to 22 June 1945 in Berlin (Battle of Berlin). At the author's request, the work was published anonymously for her protection. The book purports to detail the writer's experiences as a rape victim during the Red Army occupation of the city. Two years after her death in 2003 the anonymous author was identified in the Süddeutsche Zeitung by Jens Bisky (a German literary editor) as Marta Hillers. (Wiki)
The controversial German movie is about the women who survived the war by working as captivate prostitutes for the Russians. Just like every war all the men were killed and women were tortured and captured by the occupiers. The starting of the movie is really nice as how it shows how people have to go through and live through once Russians won over Germany. The women whose husbands were Nazi were bound to be raped and tortured by the occupiers.
The performances by all the German actor and actresses and especially Nina Hoss, August Diehl & Evgeniy Sidikhin are admirable. Because the performances in these hard hitting movies makes you believe the situation. The beginning of the movie really good but the movie falls when they start showing the romance between German woman and the Red Army commander, it slowed down the phase.
On the whole, A woman in Berlin is a really nice movie about the aftermaths of the War.