Thursday, January 21, 2016

Guide to Germany for Refugees, Visitors, Future Citizens

Guten Tag!
As most people know, Germany has accepted ca. 1 million aylum seekers and refugees, also referred to as migrants. This is an incredible challenge.  How does one integrate so many people from such disparate cultures and speaking various languages into an open and mature Western culture and society such as is found in Germany?  Click here to read a brochure developed to aid newcomers.  While much is familiar to those of us in the West, there are Germany-specific customs and habits that might be of interest to German language learners.  Click here to go to brochure.    

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Berlin & Beyond 2016: San Francisco Goethe Institute Presents the 20th Film Festival at the Castro Theater

The Berlin & Beyond 20th Anniversary Film Festival will commence on January 14th to the 17th at the Castro Theater and continue at the Goethe Institute from January 18th through the 20th.
Click here to go to the official site for complete information, including the schedule of films.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

2 German Films Explore the Past in Post-war Germany: Phoenix and Labyrinth of Lies

First up: Phoenix, directed by Christian Petzold, who also directed Phoenix star Nina Hoss in Barbara (also worth looking up on Netflix.)  Click here for more.   Phoenix is currently playing at the Opera Plaza Cinema in San Francisco and at two East Bay locations.  

Labyrinth of Lies is another film examining the post-war moral landscape of Germany.  Click here for more.  Labyrinth of Lies is now playing at the Clay Theater in San Francisco.  

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Deutschland 83: The Cold War was Heating Up

This solid drama of the late Cold War period in Germany is an eight-episode German television series starring Jonas Nay as a 24-year-old native of East Germany who, in 1983, is sent to the West as an undercover spy for the Stasi.  

The show is notable for its extensive use of 1980s popular music, including Nena's "99 Red Balloons," David Bowie, and New OrderEurythmics, among others. Each week's episode has a curated playlist of music from and/or inspired by the episodes.  The score was created by Reinhold Heil, who produced Nena's famous song, "99 Red Balloons."
It can be viewed on Sundance TV for free (though for a limited time) or it can be purchased for $1.99 per episode (a bargain at $15.92.  Think of it as part of your German language studies) on Amazon Prime.    
Here's a short "advanced" German language quiz.  Take it and see how you do.  If you do well, or even if you don't, it's not too late to enroll in German classes at CCSF this Fall.  
And in case you've not heard it in a long time or weren't even around back then, here is Nena's big hit: