Director Christian Petzold

Production year 2014

Length 98min.

Country Germany


June, 1945. Badly injured, her face destroyed, Auschwitz survivor Nelly returns to Berlin. She’s accompanied by Lene, a Jewish Agency employee and Nelly’s friend from pre-war days. Having barely recovered from facial surgery, Nelly ignores Lene’s warnings and sets out to find her husband, Johnny – the love of her life who, by refusing to abandon their marriage, protected her from Nazi persecution for so long. Nelly’s family has been murdered in the Holocaust. Johnny is convinced that his wife, too, is dead. When Nelly tracks him down, he doesn’t believe it could really be her. Hoping to secure her family’s inheritance, Johnny suggests to Nelly to take on the identity of his late wife. Nelly agrees: She becomes her own imposter. She wants to know whether Johnny loved her – and whether he betrayed her. Nelly wants her old life back.


Christian Petzold
Christian Petzold



Florian Koerner von Gustorf


Christian Petzold

Director of Photography

Hans Fromm

Music by

Stefan Will


Bettina Böhler


Nina Hoss, Ronald Zehrfeld, Nina Kunzendorf, Imogen Kogge

Production company(ies)

The Match Factory GmbH

Christian Petzold

After studying German and drama at the Freie Universität, he enrolls in Berlin's German Academy for Film and Television. There he studies movie direction while at the same time working as an assistant director to Harun Farocki and Hartmut Bitomsky. After graduation, Christian Petzold makes a series of interesting TVfilms. In 2000, his first theatrical feature, Die innere Sicherheit/The State I Am in, about a couple of left-wing terrorists, is released and makes a strong impression and earning its director both the German Film Award and the Hessischer Best Film Award. By 2012, this prolific creator has managed to make two more TVfilms and five additional features, among which Yella and Barbara, which is quite rightly awarded the Gold Bear.


Die innere Sicherheit/The State I Am in (2000), Wolfsburg (2003), Ghosts (2005), Yella (2007), Jerichow (2008), Barbara (2012), Phoenix (2014).

FILMS 2015