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Generation War

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A Different Country
The German army begins to retreat from the Eastern Front, and all five friends must decide who to side with in order to survive and fulfill their pledge to reunite in Berlin.

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A Different War
As the war progresses, the soldiers realize they are not fighting the war that they expected. Charlotte and Greta must live with the consequences of their choices, and Viktor and Wilhelm find themselves on the run.

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A Different Time
On the eve of the Russian invasion in 1941, five German friends gather in Berlin before going separate ways: army lieutenant Wilhelm, his intellectual brother Friedhelm, nurse Charlotte, Jewish tailor Viktor, and his singer girlfriend Greta.

Watch Generation War Season 1 Episode 1 Now

Generation War is a German WWII mini-series by Music Box Films, premiered in 2013, starring Volker Bruch, Tom Schilling, and Katharina Schüttler. This three-part historical drama offers a vivid portrayal of Berlin, depicting how five friends’ lives are upset by the atrocities of the war from 1941 to 1945. The mini-series attempts to shed light on the personal experiences of the protagonists as they navigate their lives through one of the most tumultuous periods in history.

The central characters consist of Wilhelm (Volker Bruch), a Wehrmacht officer, his younger brother Friedhelm (Tom Schilling), an introverted dreamer conscripted into the German army, Greta (Katharina Schüttler), an ambitious young singer, Charlotte (Miriam Stein), a nurse on the Eastern front, and Viktor (Ludwig Trepte), a Jewish tailor. These friends toast to happiness and a quick end to the war, unaware of the drastic turns their lives are about to take. As these characters' journeys unfold, Generation War presents thought-provoking perspectives, highlighting both the German home-front and the Eastern front, the tragedy of war, and the dilemmas faced by ordinary people thrust into extraordinary situations.

Wilhelm, portrayed by Volker Bruch, is the eldest and offers a stereotype of an obedient German soldier, a man of honor and loyalty, fondly called the 'warrior' by his friends. His character undergoes an exceptional transformation as the series progresses – from an initially idealistic and patriotic soldier turned battle-weary officer disillusioned by the cruelty of war.

Friedhelm, masterfully embodied by Tom Schilling, is the reserved, intellectual younger brother who had minimal intentions of being a soldier. His character offers profound reflections on war, destiny, and inevitability. He often serves as the series' moral compass, questioning the sense of warfare and the actions of his countrymen.

Greta, played by Katharina Schüttler, is a singer with dreams of stardom. Full of ambition and hope, her character navigates a path fraught with compromises and deceptions as she uses connections to protect her Jewish boyfriend, Viktor.

Charlotte, or Charly (Miriam Stein), is naive, sheltered, and inclined towards the ideal of the nationalistic, heroic German woman. As she experiences firsthand the horrors and harsh realities on the Eastern front, her innocence is rapidly replaced with disillusionment and resolve.

Finally, Viktor, depicted by Ludwig Trepte, is a proud Jewish German, and the most vulnerable of the group due to his ethnicity. The series follows him through his experiences of prejudice, desperation, and survival, considered by many as the embodiment of the series' emotional core.

The entire cast gives a stellar performance and adds depth to their respective roles. Their performances create believable, multi-dimensional characters leading the audience into a reflection on the human condition amid the horrors of war. The storyline, although harsh and brutal, is interwoven with moments of hope, love, disappointment, and betrayal, offering a complex, layered narrative that captivates viewers from start to finish.

The series' attempt to capture the epic scale of World War II is indeed commendable. The settings, cinematography, and production design deserve special mention. Generation War meticulously recreates the era, from the grand panorama of war-riddled battlegrounds to the eerie silence of abandoned homes. The graphic scenes of violence and destruction remind the audience of the ruthless reality of war.

Moreover, the series excels in its nuanced approach to the moral questions about war, responsibility, and survival. Rather than focusing heavily on the historical aspects of the period, Generation War aims to present a tale that transcends boundaries, centering on human emotions, desires, and survival instincts during a time of extreme hardship.

On the downside, the show has been met with some criticism, particularly about its representation of historical circumstances. While some appreciated the humanization of German people during WWII, others criticized it as a whitewashing attempt of German wartime history and the belief that it overly victimizes Germans.

In a nutshell, Generation War is a poignant, engrossing mini-series that makes for a compelling watch, offering a distinctively personal perspective on a globally impacting historical event. Shrouded in controversy but unquestionably engaging, Generation War is a brave and profound exploration of World War II that demands attention.

Generation War is a series categorized as a new series. Spanning 1 seasons with a total of 3 episodes, the show debuted on 2014. The series has earned a mostly positive reviews from both critics and viewers. The IMDb score stands at 8.4.

How to Watch Generation War

How can I watch Generation War online? Generation War is available on Music Box Films with seasons and full episodes. You can also watch Generation War on demand at Amazon Prime, Tubi TV, Amazon, Google Play, Vudu, Apple TV online.

Music Box Films
Volker Bruch, Tom Schilling, Katharina Sch
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