An Open Letter to German Movie Star Bruno Ganz

Dear Mr. Ganz,

Thank you very much for your wonderful performances in Downfall and Wings of Desire.  You are now my favorite German actor.

Perhaps I should confess that you're the only German actor that I know, but you may blame this on my terrible Americanism.

Downfall is the best drama I've seen in five years.  I greatly enjoyed and appreciated the honesty and compassion of your performance as Adolf Hitler, the presence of either  would have been a career accomplishment for any actor.  But you managed both, proving your mastery of the craft of dramatic performance and historical interpretation.

Is that how you saw the role, historical interpretation?  How does an actor deal with portraying a character about whom the audience already has so many preconceived notions?

If Downfall showcased your technique, then Wings of Desire proved your ability to truly communicate and move your audience.  I watched this movie because it was one of those titles that you hear about, that a movie buff like me should know and love.

I did love it, very much.  It moved me in a way I wasn't expecting, and I felt I learned a lot about the divine and the earthly.  I'm afraid to watch the sequel; is it any good?  Does it get the Ganz endorsement?

Having given me my first appreciation for German cinema, where do I go from here?  What are the Godfathers and Annie Halls of the German language?

In closing, thank you once again for the wonderful movie experiences and I look forward to Netflixing the rest of your filmography.  (Do you have Netflix in Germany?  It's a DVD-by-mail service responsible for the maintenance of film addictions across my country.)

Please continue your great work and I'll continue to be your fan.


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