German Language Blog

German movies: Lola rennt (Run Lola Run) Posted by on Nov 16, 2011 in Culture, Language, Music

The movie

„Jeden Tag, jede Sekunde triffst Du eine Entscheidung, die dein Leben verändern kann.“

(„Every day, every second you make a decision that could change your life.“)

You can say that this Satz (sentence) is something like the credo of this fast-paced movie made by Tom Tykwer in 1998. The story of the movie is quite simple: Manni (Moritz Bleibtreu) has an urgent need of 100.000 Marks that he ows some gangsters. He calls his girlfriend Lola (Franka Potente) to tell her and she instantly tries to help him. Generally speaking, that´s all!

But: How the movie is made is something that makes it really special. The story is told mehrere (several) times, but each time, the action shows leichte (slight) differences that lead to different endings. Each of the three runs is a literal run through Berlin by Lola.

Due to its treibendem (impulsive) electronic soundtrack (also made by director Tom Tykwer by the way) and its creative cuts, the movie is totally entertaining and keeps your feet moving while watching.

Watch the trailer:

The language

Lola rennt is in many ways ideal for language learners. Anyone learning German will enjoy the Herausforderung (challenge) of trying to understand the fast and very zeitgenössische (contemporary) German used in the film. With the help of subtitles, the listener will even be able to pick up some slang words like „Kippen“ for cigarettes („cigs“), just to metion one example.

Tykwer’s use of “Groundhog Day” repetitiveness, with its three parallel realities, often gives us a second and sometimes even a third chance to hear certain lines in the movie. But there are also subtile (subtle) variations and surprises that keep any repetition from becoming boring.

Cast and crew

Meanwhile Frank Potente is one of the best known German actresses and also made her way to Hollywood. So she played in the movie „Blow“ starring Johnny Depp and „The Bournde Identity“ with Matt Damon.

Moritz Bleibtreu is as well one of the best known actors in Germany. Beside some international productions, he can be seen in zahllosen (countless) German movies. It is totally clear, that Lola rennt was a steppingstone for both of them. Potente and Bleibtreu.

Tom Tykwer, the director of the movie made some international furor with the film adaption of Patrick Süskind`s „The perfume“ starring Dustin Hoffmann.

So if you see the DVD while shopping, get it and you won´t regret it!


Some vocabulary to this post:

der Satz – sentence
mehrere – several
leicht – slight
treibend – impulsive
die Herausforderung – challenge
zeitgenössisch – contemporary
subtil – subtle
zahllos – countless

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About the Author: jan

My name is Jan and I live in the south west of Germany. My profession is being a project manager at a company that creates digital media (first of all internet related things). This is my job since over a decade so I´m quite familiar with the web and its tools. Whereat today almost every school kid does. But that´s one of the main reasons why nowadays there are quasi no more limits in the internet and so it can be used for all imaginable types of things. For example learning languages! And that´s where we are at the moment. I first got in touch with Transparent Language when my family and I used to live in France a couple of years ago. I just had a break from work and by coincidence I produced some cultural videos in French. A few months later the whole blogging thing came up and I was lucky to be a part of it. So now my (second) job is to feed you with information, exercises, vocabulary, grammar and stories about Germany and German language. For being a passionate videographer I´m trying to do this more and more by videos. If you have any wishes or needs of topics that should be treated here, please don´t hesitate to contact me via a comment field. I´m open to your suggestions (as long as they are not too individual) and will try to satisfy your needs.