Hans Fallada (1893-1947) was a German novelist who wrote several best seller in the period between the two World Wars. His highly regarded books focused on the lives of ordinary people and were considered masterpieces of socialist realism. As the Nazi National Socialist party consolidated its hold over Germany, he was under ever-increasing pressure to write a "quality" anti-Semitic novel. This biographical film is set in 1937, with Fallada (Jorg Gudzuhn) suffering the effects of living under a microscope. The film details his decline, as he is intermittently imprisoned and threatened in order to motivate him to write for the Fatherland. Even the attention of his kind, patient wife (Jutta Wachowiak) and loving children begin to feel oppressive to him. This is one of the few films to take a serious, in-depth look at the tribulations of a creative artist pulled in all different directions by the real world.
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