1945 Adolf Hitler has retreated to his Berlin bunker amidst the city's onslaught and destruction by the Soviet Red Army. When it becomes apparent that the German military campaign is a lost cause, he savagely lambasts all around him for having failed, while making plans for his final exit.

Watch: Hitler reacts to SBS doing a 'Downfall' meme


A vital piece of cinema.

Downfall is a gripping insight into how the Third Reich's grand dream came to an end. Although critics argue that Oliver Hirschbiegel has created an apologist rendering of Hitler, for daring to portray him and his henchmen and women sympathetically.

But this is too simplistic - Downfall works because it is an intimate, disturbing portrait of megalomania, that proves that humans, even ones as grotesque as Hitler need to be seen as more than black and white, good and evil. He was despicable, but he was able to force an entire nation to join him in his insanity.


Watch 'Downfall'

Thursday 3 December, 9:30pm on SBS World Movies
Sunday 6 December, 2:10am on SBS World Movies
Tuesday 8 December, 11:55pm on SBS World Movies

Germany, 2004
Genre: History, Drama
 Oliver Hirschbiegel
Starring: Bruno Ganz, Alexandra Maria Lara, Juliane Köhler
What's it about?
Charting the last 10 days of Hitler's (played by Ganz) life, from his 56th birthday on April 20th, 1945 to his suicide on April 30th, Downfall uses multiple characters to show the chaos of a country coming apart at the seams, from Hitler's henchman under the streets of Berlin, to the soldiers and civilians fighting and dying as the Soviet Army ravaged the city above. Nominated for an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film in 2005.

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