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This marvellous film was made 50 years after the central event, Germany's victory in the 1954 world cup finals which took place in Bern, Switzerland. The social developments of the time play an equally large part in the narrative as Peter Lubanski the father of the family returns to Essen after 11 years of imprisonment in Russia.
The film opens with a group of friends including the main protagonist Mattes, waiting for the results of their favourite team Rot-Weiss Essen's latest match by pigeon post. Subsequent results including the world cup matches themselves are delivered by a full range of communicational methods to Mattes whether it be through the radio or reenacted by the friends as they play football in the street.
The Heimkehrer Peter finds it incredibly difficult to identify with the world he finds on his return and most of the drama in the film derives from his clashes with his own family as he struggles to regain his confidence. The inevitable reconciliation is thoughtfully and beautifully constructed resulting in the ultimate feelgood factor film.
At the same time as being an excellent drama, one is also immersed in the period of reconstruction as the Wirtschaftswunder starts to kick off; one realizes suddenly that Adi Dassler who is showing Herberger, the national team manager his latest design for screw-in studs is the founder of Adidas, part and parcel of German's economic success story.
This is an excellent film to study on several levels. The alevelgerman.com resources are designed to help build excellent knowledge of the narrative and to provide plenty of grammatical exemplification at the same time as reinforcing familiarity with the characters and plot.