The Murderers Are among Us
In 1945, the artist Susanne Wallner (Hildegard Knef) returns to Berlin after spending three years in a concentration camp. Yet amid the ruins, she is filled with a renewed energy for life. When she arrives at her old apartment, she finds that Dr. Hans Mertens (Ernst Wilhelm Borchert) has taken up residence there. A physician and former German officer, Mertens is haunted by the wartime execution of Polish civilians, which he did nothing to prevent. Under Susanne's care, the broken man gathers new strength. Then, by chance, Mertens meets his former captain (Arno Paulsen) and decides to take the law into his own hands.
The Murderers Are among Us was the first film made in Germany after WWII and has since become a classic. It was supported by the Soviet Allies and produced by the newly-founded DEFA Studio. Its film noir style successfully blends German expressionism with a striking affinity to Italian neorealism.
- New digitally restored transfer
- Biographies & Filmographies
- “Original Exposé: The Man I Will Kill,” by Wolfgang Staudte, 1945
- “Revenge or Redemption amongst the Rubble,” by Eddie Muller, president of the Film Noir Foundation
- “The Responsibility of the Director,” journalist Margit Voss in conversation with director Wolfgang Staudte, 1966
- “Denazification | The E.W. Borchert Case,” by Burghard Ciesla, historian
- “The Film on US and UK Screens, 1948,” by Rosemary Stott, film historian; Hiltrud Schulz, cultural historian
- Gallery: Shooting the Film, by Abraham Pisarek, photographer
- Newsreels: Making and Premiere of the Film (1946)
- Berlin, July 1945 (Germany, 2015, dir. Konstantin von zur Mühlen, 7 min.)