Der Tunnel (The Tunnel)


Der Tunnel (The Tunnel)

Critics Consensus

The Tunnel is both a tension-filled thriller and a riveting history lesson.



Reviews Counted: 25

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Audience Score

User Ratings: 3,134


All Critics | Top Critics
Average Rating: N/A
Reviews Count: 0
Fresh: 0
Rotten: 0


Average Rating: 4/5

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Movie Info

La fuga de un campeón de natación del régimen comunista de la Alemania Oriental. Heino Ferch, Nicolette Krebitz, Alexandra Maria Lara, Sébastien Koch. Dirigida por Roland Suso Richter.


Heino Ferch
as Harry Melchior
Nicolette Krebitz
as Friederike 'Fritzi' Scholz
Sebastian Koch
as Matthis Hiller
Felix Eitner
as Fred von Klausnitz
Alexandra Maria Lara
as Lotte Lohmann
Claudia Michelsen
as Carola Langensiep
Karin Baal
as Marianne von Klausnitz
Heinrich Schmieder
as Theo Lohmann
Uwe Kockisch
as Oberst Krüger
Rainer Sellien
as Georg Himmrich
Wolf-Dietrich Sprenger
as Fotograf Gruner
Sarah Kubel
as Ina Lohmann
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Critic Reviews for Der Tunnel (The Tunnel)

All Critics (25) | Top Critics (15)

Richter makes wonderful if obvious use of the wall and the tunnel as built-in metaphors for our struggle for human connection and dread of helplessness and change.

Sep 23, 2005 | Rating: 3.5/4

It is the kind of superbly crafted, intelligent entertainment -- a classic suspense thriller -- that nowadays is as welcome as it is rare.

Sep 15, 2005 | Rating: 4.5/5 | Full Review…

Richter gives a raw, frank but sophisticated account of the excruciating logistics of this great escape, and the appalling, inspiring blend of betrayal and courage that attended the group's herculean efforts.

Sep 15, 2005

A true story few people will know, and it's told with a warm, crafty efficiency that makes for wonderful entertainment.

Sep 2, 2005 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

It's a gripping great-escape yarn of the sort we don't see much anymore.

Sep 2, 2005 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…
Boston Globe
Top Critic

Either as history at its most inspiring or moviemaking at its most exciting, The Tunnel is a trip.

Aug 19, 2005 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Der Tunnel (The Tunnel)


Based on true events. A gripping drama about a group of people in the early '60s who try to break out their loved ones living in communist East digging a 145 meter tunnel under the Berlin Wall. I enjoyed this film so much that it didn't feel even close to being 2 hours and 47 minutes long. Very tense, and dramatic.

Cynthia S.
Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer

Originally a miniseries for German television and based on real events (two phrases usually marked for contempt) here is a tension riveting trip to Berlin in the days right after The Wall was built. Rich with nuanced character development (and informed by American media) its not quite so far or long as may be imagined. A consideration on illegal immigration worth your time.

Kevin M. Williams
Kevin M. Williams

Super Reviewer

Based on true events, this movie uses loads of general rules of fictionalization. While that surely made it look somewhat unauthentic, nevertheless, it also helped to keep me hooked to the movie. The project was almost always on the brink of destruction, but they manage to escape somehow. The story was nicely weaved, and I kept wondering what's next. Because the movie is based on real events, it made me care more for its characters. Although it doesn't reflect the events as they actually occurred, the movie succeeds in dramatizing the events so as to make it more intriguing. I don't know if I'd have liked the simple filming of the events without fictionalization. Probably, I may know it some day if at all I can get to see that 1962 movie "Tunnel 28" (aka "Escape from East Berlin") which displays some real footage of the events. However, the probability for that is almost negligible. One of the best escape movies which had escaped from my attention till date. I can't recall how I exactly stumbled upon it. Seems like it isn't that popular, even though IMHO, it's far better than "The Great Escape".

familiar stranger
familiar stranger

Super Reviewer

[font=Century Gothic]"The Tunnel" starts in 1961 as the Berlin Wall is being built by East German authorities to stem the flow of emigration to the West. Engineer Matthis Hiller(Sebastian Koch) succeeds in escaping via the sewers but is separated in the confusion from his wife, Carola(Claudia Michelsen). From West Berlin, he manages to get a fake passport back to his friend, Harry Melchior(Heino Ferch), a champion swimmer, who strolls to freedom. But Harry cannot arrange for his sister Lotte's(Alexandra Maria Lara) family to be brought over to the West, and cannot abide being separated from her. So, he cooks up a plan with Matthis, Vittorio(Mehmet Kurtulus), an American expatriate, and Fred(Felix Eitner), a West German native, to dig a tunnel 145 meters into East Berlin from an abandoned factory on the west side of the wall.[/font] [font=Century Gothic][/font] [font=Century Gothic]Incredibly based on a true story, "The Tunnel" gets off to a horrendous start as it seems at first to be only concerned with making political points instead of telling a story. But once it gets going, the movie develops into a taut thriller with more than its share of heartrending moments, any politics subtly pushed into the background. In the end, it is about ordinary people turned into real-life heroes caught between two conflicting ideologies, watching their country being torn apart and no longer able to trust each other.[/font]

Walter M.
Walter M.

Super Reviewer

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