Find a Theater Near You Press Page

Generation War Complete Mini-Series

Watch Trailer
Watch Trailer

Valor, courage, and betrayal come to the fore in this remarkable epic that shows the everyday realities of wartime life from a deeply personal perspective. Billed as a German Band of Brothers, GENERATION WAR vividly depicts the lives of five young German friends forced to navigate the unconscionable moral compromises of life under Hitler. In Berlin in 1941, on the eve of Hitler’s invasion of the Soviet Union, level-headed officer Wilhelm (Volker Bruch) is full of patriotic fervor as he heads for the eastern front with his sensitive younger brother Friedhelm (Tom Schilling). Charlotte (Miriam Stein) is a young nurse in love with Wilhelm who is serving in the Red Cross. Greta (Katherina Schüttler) is an ambitious singer who longs to become another Marlene Dietrich, while her boyfriend Viktor (Ludwig Trepte) faces a daily struggle for survival as a Jew in an increasingly oppressive regime. These five exceptional young actors infuse their characters with the certainty of youth, which drains away with each successive month of war as the true horrors of the Third Reich are slowly revealed. At nearly every moment, they are faced with choices between complicity and rebellion, self-preservation and self-sacrifice, blood on their hands and love in their hearts. Eight years in the making and filmed on over 150 sets across Germany, Lithuania and Latvia, GENERATION WAR insightfully reveals a country still grappling with how previous generations could have become so tragically misdirected. In Germany, the film has sparked a passionate discussion about personal responsibility and the legacy of guilt for Nazi atrocities. German critics have widely praised the film, with Der Spiegel calling GENERATION WAR a “turning point in German television” and national newspaper Suddeutsche Zeitung describing it as “the first and last chance… to ask our grandparents about their true biographies, their immoral compromises…the missed chances to act.”

Reactions, Awards & Festivals

“Absorbing, exciting...Battles are staged with SAVING PRIVATE RYAN-like intensity and precision...has a sweep and vigor that recall GONE WITH THE WIND.”

A.O. Scott

The New York Times

"A remarkable success! Generation War has galvanized a new discussion about Germany's War Guilt"

Thomas Rogers

The New Republic


The Guardian

"Shockingly Realistic!"

The Independent

"A German Band of Brothers!"

Hollywood Reporter

Winner! San Diego Jewish Film Festival - Audience Choice Award for Best Feature Film

Winner! International Emmy Awards 2014 - Best TV Movie/Miniseries

Cast & Crew
  • Wilhelm : Volker Bruch
  • Friedhelm : Tom Schilling
  • Greta : Katharina Schüttler
  • Viktor : Ludwig Trepte
  • Charlotte : Miriam Stein
  • Lilja : Christiane Paul
  • Hiemer : Sylvester Groth
  • Dr. Jhan : Götz Schuber
  • Dorn : Mark Waschke
  • Hauptmann Feigl : Maxim Mehmet
  • Director : Philipp Kadelbach
  • Script : Stefan Kolditz
  • Producer : Nico Hofmann
  • Cinematography : David Slama
  • Editor : Bernd Schlegel 
  • Music : Fabian Römer
Technical Info
  • Production Year : 2012
  • Release Date : January 15, 2014
  • Countries of Production : Germany
  • Languages : German
  • Running Time : 279 Minutes
  • Screen Ratio : 1.77:1
  • Sound : Dolby
  • Color : Yes
  • Rating : Not Rated
DVD/Blu-Ray Special Features

Master Class Panel with the Generation War creators: writer Stefan Kolditz and producer Benjamin Benedict

12 pg. booklet with photos and essay by Sarah Hall| professor of Germanic Studies

International and Theatrical Trailers

  • EPISODE 1 : On the eve of the Russian invasion in 1941, five German friends gather in Berlin before going separate ways: army lieutenant Wilhelm, his intellectual brother Friedhelm, nurse Charlotte, Jewish tailor Viktor, and his singer girlfriend Greta.
  • :
  • EPISODE 2 : As the war progresses, the soldiers realize they are not fighting the war that they expected. Charlotte and Greta must live with the consequences of their choices, and Viktor and Wilhelm find themselves on the run.
  • :
  • EPISODE 3 : The German army begins to retreat from the Eastern Front, and all five friends must decide who to side with in order to survive and fulfill their pledge to reunite in Berlin.