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Einer trage des anderen Last... (Bear Ye One Another's Burdens...)

1987, color, 106 min. Feature
Dir.: Lothar Warneke
Script: Wolfgang Held
Camera: Peter Ziesche
Music: Günther Fischer
Cast: Jörg Pose, Manfred Möck, Karin Gregorek, Heinz Dieter Knaup
35mm, English subtitles - renting information
VHS-NTSC, no subtitles:


The script to this controversial film was kept in a drawer over than ten years until, in 1988, Director Warneke finally received permission from the East German authorities to begin production. At the beginning of the 1950s, two extremely disparate men meet in a private sanatorium for consumptives: an officer in the People's Police, Josef Heiliger, and a young Protestant curate, Hubertus Koschenz. On account of their illness, they have to share a room. Initially, this is the only thing they have in common. Whereas Heiliger pins up a Stalin portrait over his bedside table, the curate insists on having a picture of Christ over his table. Whenever Hubertus summons some people to prayers, Josef calls others to a Party meeting. One sings the Church hymn "Eine feste Burg ist unser Gott" during his early-morning shave, the other strikes up the Communist song "The International." This setup does not work out well for long. Soon both ask the medical superintendent to be placed in separate rooms. Their request is denied. Josef Heiliger is severely ill and faces becoming an invalid soon unless medicine is obtained from the U.S. But the doctors cannot get hold of this wonder remedy. Still, Heiliger regains his high spirits. He falls in love with Sonja, a young fellow patient, without realizing, however, that she is destined to die of a fatal disease. After a terrible argument, the men straighten things out and get along much better. Spring arrives and Heiliger leaves the sanatorium. Koschenz manages to procure the healing substance through a Swiss Protestant aid organization and secretly passes it on to Josef.

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