Movie review: Downfall Directed by Oliver Hirschbiegel Germany: Constantin Film Produktion, 2004.
Movie Review: 'Downfall' Directed by Oliver Hirschbiegel Germany: Constantin Film Produktion, 2004. 176 mins. Downfall, directed by Oliver Hirschbiegel and released in 2004, is based upon the events surrounding the final days of Adolf Hitler’s Third Reich. Formed from the much-admired Third Reich historian Joachim Fest’s book Inside Hitler's Bunker and bolstered with the naivety encapsulated in the memoirs of Traudl Junge, Hitler’s personal secretary, the film is testament to Hitschbiegel’s ability to blend both a strong semblance of historical accuracy with a gripping and fear-provoking insight into the final days of the Nazi elite. The main characters are Adolf Hitler (played by Bruno Ganz) and Traudl Junge, (played by Alexandra Maria Lara). The film is set inside both Hitler’s Berlin bunker and the surrounding Chancellery district in late April 1945. The film also portrays the strong emotional turmoil surrounding the demise of the senior Nazi hierarchy immediately prior to Germany’s surrender to Allied forces on May 7 1945. The film covers a range of issues including Nazism, democracy, totalitarianism, political betrayal and war crimes.