Romanian-German actress Alexandra Maria Lara is a familiar face both inside and outside of the German film industry. Born in Bucharest, Lara and her family fled Communist Romania in the early 1980s. The family eventually found refuge in West Germany. Today, she is a notable actress in the world of cinema. But not just in German films. You may have seen her in big Hollywood English-language films such as The Reader, the Ron Howard directed Rush, the Francis Ford Coppola directed Youth Without Youth, or the Anton Corbijn directed Control. Lara clearly is making her mark on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean.
Lara has appeared in major German language films like Der Untergang and the recent Amazon original series You Are Wanted. Practice your German language skills with these three film and television recommendations featuring actress Alexandra Maria Lara.
Der Untergang is the 2004 film showing the final days of Adolf Hitler (portrayed by Bruno Ganz). The film title is Downfall in English-speaking markets. Alexandra Maria Lara portrays Traudl Junge, Hitler’s longtime and dedicated secretary. It is 1945. The war is nearly over. Hitler and the remains of Nazi Germany’s government and a group of secretaries are hiding in an underground bunker. Der Untergang depicts the frenzy as the Allies are closing in on Berlin. Hitler is feeling the pressure. The film is intense and fascinating.
The real-life Junge’s book, Until the Final Hour, was part of the basis for the film’s story. Actor Heino Ferch appears in the film as Nazi official Albert Speer and Ulrich Matthes portrays propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels.
Der Fischer und seine Frau
2005’s Der Fischer und seine Frau (The Fisherman and his wife) is a film from legendary writer and director Doris Dörrie. The film draws on the Brothers Grimm fairy tale “The Fisherman and His Wife” for inspiration.
In the film version, veterinarian Otto (played by Christian Ulmen) travels to Japan looking for fish. There he meets Ida (portrayed by Lara), a fashion designer. Otto and a friend both compete for Ida’s affections. But Otto wins her over. They soon fall in love, marry, and start a family. But soon, Ida’s career ambitions and success cause a divide in their relationship.
You Are Wanted
Matthias Schweighöfer portrays Lukas, a 36-year old working in a hotel in Berlin. When the German capital city experiences a city-wide electrical outage on his birthday, his electronic devices become infected. The police say a hacker group is responsible for cutting the power. They accuse Lukas of being a member of the group. Despite his attempts to clear things up, things just get worse and worse. The State says he is a terrorist. The individual or individuals begin blackmailing him deeper and deeper into the underworld. He tries to clear his name while protecting his wife and their young son. Lara portrays his wife, Hanna, who is initially supportive. But she becomes confused as information leaks. Does she really know her husband? The story reveals itself with each engrossing episode.
You Are Wanted is Amazon’s first German television show available for streaming internationally. In fact, it was the first non-English show to be released by Amazon internationally. The show is available from Amazon Prime Video in German with English subtitles.
Practice practice practice! Discover other great German language actors and actresses previously featured.
This post contains affiliate links. You Are Wanted photo by Stephan Rabold Amazon Studios Pantaleon Films Warner.