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Filmmaker Bio
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Narrated in English by Kenneth Branagh

2004, 107 minutes, German


“A rare and chilling glimpse into a brilliant but toxic mind. Fascinating & engrossing!” - New York Times

“Seeing what Hitler's propaganda minister saw and hearing his diary entries, we effectively live inside this monster's head. As powerful as DOWNFALL...a visceral documentary” - New York Post


Joseph Goebbels is one of the primary symbols of Germany's Nazi regime and a 20th century icon of maniacal cruelty. His name is synonymous with cynical, unscrupulous, yet highly effective propaganda. The life of Goebbels is far more complicated and disturbing than labels like "genius of spin" or his characterization in DOWNFALL would suggest. In their documentary, Lutz Hachmeister and Michael Kloft show for the first time how Goebbels continually reinvented himself - from his early days as a radical "popular socialist" to the final hours in Hitler's bunker.

Drawing from his extensive diaries, the film lets Goebbels speak for himself (through the voice of Academy Award-nominated actor Kenneth Branagh), as never before seen historical footage from German archives traces the life of the second most powerful man of the Third Reich, detailing his initial attraction to the Nazi party and his adoration of and dedication to Hitler.

The result is a fascinating window into a man who careened extravagantly between self-pity, wild extermination fantasies, and political excesses - the man behind Hitler.