Top 10 Berlin Movies

Berlin is a magical city. It has seen its fair share of ups and downs, political intrigue, and was once the capital of the dreaded Third Reich. And I’m pretty sure that not another international city has been the setting for as many movies as this gem of a city.

No, I’m not talking about movies shown at the annual Berlin International Film Festival, either. I’m talking about movies that center around a country’s capital.

You’d think that all the movies about Berlin would be about its separation into East and West Berlin during a divided Germany. They weren’t all Cold War spy films, though; and neither were they all about World War II (that’s another blog post, altogether).

I also decided not to add Berlin Express (1948) to this list, because it already made the Top 10 for the best World War II films, ever.

So, here’s my pick for the best flicks taking place in Berlin.

A Foreign Affair

Directed by Billy Wilder, A Foreign Affair stars German actress Marlene Dietrich in this romantic comedy from 1948.

Grand Hotel

There’s still something truly special about this 1932 Academy Award winning film, Grand Hotel, even after 70 years.

Kuhle Wampe

Kuhle Wampe is one of the best films taking place in Berlin that doesn’t have to do with World War II, Cold War intrigue, or anything else—it’s about a family struggling to get by during the Great Depression.

The Big Lift

Sure, The Big Lift is about the Berlin Airlift, but this 1950 film stars Montgomery Clift. Ain’t that enough for you ladies?

Octopussy

James Bond makes his appearance in Berlin during this 1993 flick Octopussy staring Roger Moore as the title character. Sorry, Mr. Sean Connery—Roger was great as the dapper and dashing British spy.

Rosenstrasse

Don’t you just love movies that are total flashbacks? I do; and the Rosenstrasse film takes a look at the Rosenstrasse Protest that took place in Berlin from February to March 1943.

The Bourne Supremacy

Matt Damon plays Jason Bourne in 2004 trying to escape the U.S. Government. I swear it’s not German politics at play in The Bourne Supremacy, my personal top favorite of all ten here. ;-)

Dr. M.

A 1990 whodunit film on a number of deaths that looked like suicides. Yeah, I enjoy a good spy thriller, but I sure like trying to figure out who did it, too.

Valkyrie

Yeah, this 2004 Tom Cruise film had some controversy before and during its making; and although I didn’t add it to the World War II list, it does deserve an honorable mention somewhere.

I bet you were expecting a “Top 10” list, but I’m leaving it at just nine—this way you can add your favorite.

OK OK, I just thought of another one…

Gotcha!

The 1985 Anthony Edwards film titled Gotcha!; it’s a comedic look into a poor college kid who’s suckered into bringing a package over to East Berlin from a girl he met in Czechoslovakia (it wasn’t nowadays’ Czech Republic back then).

Yeah, make that my 10th pick for the best films of Berlin—you can add number 11, OK?

 

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