2015 | Series | German with English subtitles | 1 season (8 episodes). Each episode is around 60 minutes | Original Release: 2015
In 1983, East Germany’s Secret Service (Stasi) is concerned that American troops stationed in West Germany may attack their country. An East German Stasi employee, Lenora Rauch, forces her reluctant nephew Martin Rauch to take on the identity of a missing West German aide and infiltrate the NATO facility in West Germany. Lenora coerces Martin into going by promising his seriously ill mother a desperately needed kidney transplant. And for extra measure, Martin is promised upon his return he and his girlfriend, Annett, will be given a fancy apartment and a new car. Martin undergoes intensive training on West German culture, the techniques of spying, and background of the young man whose identity Martin is assuming. Martin’s job is to take on the role of the missing aide to NATO head analyst Henrik Mayer. Martin must then find a way to steal and photograph documents that reveal U.S. plans to attack East Germany. He is told to romance Linda Seiler, the secretary to the head security analyst, and then bug her apartment. When the bug is discovered NATO goes on high alert. As preparations for a NATO nuclear war game start, the East Germans feel this is the real thing. It’s now up to Martin to assuage the East Berliners to cool it. Martin fears that a preemptive nuclear strike against the West is a strong possibility.
Why Stream This Series?
- Rotten Tomatoes Score (Critics Consensus): 94%
- Metacritic Score: 79
German Directors Award Metropolis: Winner, Best Director (Edward Berger)
German Television Awards: Winner, Best Actor (Jonas Nay)
International Emmy Awards: Winner, Best Drama
Peabody Awards: Winner, Best Drama
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It’s a film that’s serious and it can be stark, but it’s also funny and brisk, a coming-of-age story with a sense of adventure.
DEUTSCHLAND 83 is a fun remix of recent history, reeling you in with its good-looking, nostalgic, lightly ironic pop-culture spin on potentially apocalyptic events. On the strength of these taster episodes, I look forward to more.
Television has featured a fair amount of spying lately, and a fair amount of 1980s nostalgia, too. But DEUTSCHLAND 83, an espionage series from Germany, set in that wretched decade, is fresh and enjoyable nonetheless. Beneath the light moments and the spy-versus-spy stuff, the series has a perspective that makes it refreshing.
Superb characterizations and riveting action are leavened by wry humor, making DEUTSCHLAND 83 delightfully addictive.
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