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Ernst Thälmann - Führer seiner Klasse (Ernst Thaelmann - Leader of the Working Class)

1955, color, 139 min. Feature
Dir.: Kurt Maetzig
Script: Willi Bredel, Michael Tschesno-Hell
Camera: Karl Plintzner, Horst E. Brandt
Music: Wilhelm Neef
Cast: Günther Simon, Hans-Peter Minetti, Karla Runkehl, Paul R. Henker, Hans Wehrl, Karl Brenk, Erich Franz, Erika Dunkelmann, Michel Piccoli, Werner Peters, Fritz Diez, et al.
VHS-PAL, no subtitles
- renting information


The second part of the Ernst Thälmann films encompasses the time period between 1930 and Thälmann's murder in 1944.  It shows Thälmann's battle to achieve a united front with all German workers against the National Socialists, his arrest following Hitler's seizure of power and the eleven years of his incarceration, in which he unwaveringly clings to his beliefs until his death.  An attempt to free him on the part of his comrades ends disastrously, and a corrupt offer of freedom from Göring himself receives Thälmann's refusal.  He must also witness how his brave fellow socialist Aenne Jansen in the women's prison across from his tragically loses her life during a bombing raid.
The second primary character of the film is Aenne's husband Fiete Jansen, who already proved his loyalty to Thälmann's side as a friend and fighter in the first part.  As the commander of the Thälmann Batallion, he fights in Spain on the side of the people and later in the ranks of the Red Army toward a speedy end to the war against fascism.

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