The white ribbon

The white ribbon

DVD - 2010 | German
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In a north German village prior to the outbreak of World War I, strange events, accidents, and deaths are occurring. The village citizens are beside themselves with worry and can't figure out what to do. After the school teacher starts to unravel the mystery, he discovers that the children of the town may be guilty of the crimes and have formed a secret society that the local pastor's daughter appears to lead.

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j
jimg2000
May 09, 2017

An artsy social drama when children turn into monsters like their parents who had become corrupted in an authoritarian society. As suggested in the opening dialogue, the background mystery was a metaphor of what was wrong with the German social order preceding WW I: extreme income inequality, prejudices towards the handicapped, extreme puritanical households, abusive parents and women’s oppression. An important film full of historic insights. With scandals, homicides, moral hypocrisy and child abuse in a tranquil town, the film could be but definitely is not another “Peyton Place 1957.”

1
1aa
Mar 14, 2017

A awesome film! Touching and creepy simultaneously. Brilliantly written. The cinematography is classical and effective.

ezaminpaima Jun 22, 2015

Beautifully filmed in black and white, this movie is filled with tension from the beginning till the end. This movie is pretty slow; however, it explores the disturbing notion that even children are capable of severe violence, when pushed to the limit.

b
BertBailey
Mar 01, 2015

Almost gave up on this, at least once, for looking so slow and conventional at the outset. But it's anything but. A deceptive black and white, it's a flick full of impact and undertow, along with one of the sweetest depictions of young, innocent, even chaste love that's ever been put on screen (I mean without cynicism). But this is not the centre of the film; on the contrary. Be prepared for goings-on that are a lot heavier, even sordid and filled with a strange malice, with which this is rich.

0
0cho
Sep 15, 2014

Another, I can’t believe this was nominated for an Academy award!! Pointless and boring. Just when you think this movie is getting somewhere, it doesn’t!!

h
hecto
Jul 16, 2014

This is a masterwork, a film that slowly builds up a sense of dread as it questions the boundary between innocence and evil. Those who have decried the absence of a 'resolution' have missed Haneke's intent.

g
geomillar
May 06, 2014

Another brilliant German film.
I love the evil hiding behind the Choral Evensong.

s
sdelao
Jan 24, 2013

Outstanding story and direction from the Austrian director, Michael Haneke. A story of suspicious events and crimes taking place in a village pretty much run by a baron and his family. The story is narrated by the village schoolteacher and follows several families before the onset of WW1. In German with English subtitles and in black and white. The movie stayed with me long after I finished the movie. I really liked the movie and I definetly thought it was thought-provoking on numerous fronts: love, child-rearing, loss of innocence and purity, etc. Recommend!

j
jonnybroom
Oct 10, 2012

This is a devastating indictment of old world attitudes and practices of child-rearing. As the narrator implies early on, the tale offers insight into the rise of fascism. The theories of Alice Miller are put in play: repression and torture produces sadistic, twisted souls. I watched it twice. The clear dialogue and slow pace make it excellent material for German language students.

a
alisarabia0969
Mar 27, 2012

sometimes when I read some comments I want to say....When there is some violence in the hockey( sorry box on the ice) what parents say to children? we are all -including kids- exposed to sex and violence, rudness every day. Unfortunately that;s what world has to offer to us

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j
jimg2000
May 09, 2017

Opening dialogue:
THE WHITE RIBBON A German children's story -- I don't know if the story I want to tell you is entirely true. Some of it I only know by hearsay. After so many years, a lot of it is still obscure, and many questions remain unanswered. But I think I must tell of the strange events that occurred in our village. They could perhaps clarify some things that happened in this country. It all began, I think, with the doctor's riding accident. ...
===
Your mother and I will sleep poorly: I have to beat you and the strokes will cause us more pain than you.
===
Tomorrow, once your punishment has purified you, your mother will re-tie a ribbon on you, and you'll wear it
until we can trust you again.
===
I gave God a chance to kill me. He didn't do it. So he's pleased with me.

j
jimg2000
May 09, 2017

I'm leaving so the children don't grow up in surroundings that are dominated by malice, envy, apathy and brutality. Sigi's whistle was the last straw. I'm sick and tired of persecutions, threats and perverse acts of revenge.
===
What is it?
-To replace Piepsi. Because you're so sad.
Thank you.
-You're welcome, Father.
===
Can you forgive me, Father?
-Forgive you for what? That the estate won't give me any work? That Frieda was fired in disgrace? That your brothers and sisters have nothing to eat? Or what?
===
The Baron wasn't popular, but as a powerful figure and employer of half the village, he was respected. His statement on the community's peace was ominous. And the mysterious character of these criminal deeds
awakened the old mistrust of the farmers.
===
It was an old custom: "Harvest's done, pay everyone, If we don't get our due, your cabbage'll be sliced for you."

j
jimg2000
May 09, 2017

He's at a difficult age.
-Actually not. They're always at a difficult age.
Yes. You didn't miss me.
-What does that mean?
Nothing. I said it because it's true. Nothing like a nice dose of self-hate!
===
He lost his appetite, couldn't sleep any more, his hands began to shake, his memory started to fail, his face became covered with pustules, then his whole body. Finally, he died. The body, that I had to bless, looked like an old man's body. Do you understand now why I'm worried? What do you think caused these changes that led
to that boy's miserable end?
-I don't know.
I think you know very well. Won't you tell me? No? Then I'll give you the answer. The boy had seen someone,
who was harming the finest nerves of his body, in the area where God has erected sacred barriers. The boy imitated this action. He couldn't stop doing it. In the end he destroyed all his nerves, and died of it.

j
jimg2000
May 09, 2017

Sordid conversation P1 of 3:

What did I do to you?
-My God, you've done nothing to me! You're ugly, messy, flabby and have bad breath. ... Don't sit there
looking like death warmed over. The world won't collapse. Not on you, or on me. I can't go on with this, that's all. I've really tried... to think of another woman while making love to you. One who smells good, who's young, less decrepit than you, but my imagination can't manage it. In the end, it's you again and then I feel like puking, and am embarrassed at myself. So what's the point?
Are you through?
-I have been for ages.
You must be very unhappy to be so mean.
-Please, not that routine!

j
jimg2000
May 09, 2017

Sordid conversation P2 of 3:

I know I'm not much to look at. My bad breath comes from my ulcer, you know that. It didn't bother you in the past. I had it when your wife was alive.
-Spare me these sordid details. Let me reassure you: it always disgusted me. After Julie's death, I wanted to ease my pain with anyone. I could have screwed a cow! Whores are too far from here, and once every two months isn't enough for me, even though I'm getting on. So skip acting like a martyr, and scram.
Why are you only noticing this now?
-When should I have noticed it?
At the hospital, I forgot how tiresome you are. One grows sentimental when in pain.
-Get out! Don't you have any pride? There's no room for any with you.
That's true. What if I do something silly?
-Go ahead. It'd surprise me. But be careful: it may be painful.

j
jimg2000
May 09, 2017

Sordid conversation P3 of 3:

I know, I'm ridiculous. You wouldn't care anyway.
-Well...
Why do you despise me? For helping to raise the boy? For watching you finger your daughter and saying nothing? For helping you to deceive yourself? For listening to you claim how you loved Julie, when everyone knew you treated her as badly as me? For loving you, when I know you can't stand being loved?
-That's it. Now get up. I have work to do.
You can't afford to get rid of me. Who'll do the dirty work for you, who'll help you with the kids, and your practice? You don't mean what you're saying. I want to see how far you can go: "Will she take it? Can I drag her even lower?" I'm tired too. I've got two retarded kids: Karli and you. You're the most troublesome one.
-My God, why don't you just die?

j
jimg2000
May 09, 2017

I tied a white ribbon in her hair. White, as you all know, is the color of innocence. The ribbon was meant to help Klara avoid sin, selfishness, envy, indecency, lies and sloth.
===
When does one stop living?
-When one is very old, or very ill.
And the woman?
-She had an accident.
An "accident"?
-Yes. It's when you're badly hurt.
Like Dad?
-Yes, but much worse than that. So bad, your body can't take it anymore.
And then you're dead ?
-Yes. But most people don't have an accident.
So they're not dead.
-No, they die much later.
When?
-Well... later, when they're really old.
Does everyone die?
-Yes.
Everyone, really?
-Yes, everyone has to die.
But not you, Anni?
-Me too. Everyone.
But not Dad?
-Dad too.
Me too?
-You too. But not for a very long time. All of us, only in a very long time.
One can't fight it? It has to happen?
-Yes, but not for a very long time.
And Mom? She didn't go on a trip? Is she dead too?
-Yes.
She's dead too. But that was a long time ago.

j
jimg2000
May 09, 2017

On July 28th, Austria declared war on Serbia. On Saturday, August 1st, Germany declared war on Russia, and on France the following Monday. The solemn service next Sunday was attended by the whole village. A feeling of expectation and departure was in the air. Now everything was going to change.
===
If you ever dare to bother others with this, if you ever accuse respectable families and their children and denounce them publicly, I'll make sure, take my word for it, that you go to prison. I've seen a lot during my work as a pastor, but never anything so repulsive! One can tell you have no children. Or you wouldn't stoop to such aberrations. You have a sick mind. How did they let you loose among those poor creatures!

Read more: http://www.springfieldspringfield.co.uk/movie_script.php?movie=das-weisse-band-eine-deutsche-kindergeschichte-the-white-ribbon

Age Suitability

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haPPY_FUn_baLL
Sep 19, 2010

haPPY_FUn_baLL thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over

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Teyfor8Wyoma
Sep 04, 2010

Teyfor8Wyoma thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

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t
Teyfor8Wyoma
Sep 04, 2010

Sexual Content: This title contains Sexual Content.

t
Teyfor8Wyoma
Sep 04, 2010

Violence: This title contains Violence.

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