The Class – Berlin `61

Around midnight on the second Sunday in August, armed border police and combat groups take up posts in the centre of Berlin. The border roads are torn up, barbed wire is rolled out, and S-Bahn traffic is interrupted. In the early morning, East Berliners are sealed off. Berlin is divided, and the class 13e is also torn apart. When the Abitur students hear on the radio that the border has been sealed off with barbed wire, they can’t believe it. Each of them is faced with a decision: Accept the separation or try to cross the border somehow? – A big risk: friends stay behind, often also the parents. Will they see each other again? – Decisions that the young people have to make in just a few hours. Rüdiger- wants to flee on 11 September. When he and his sister arrive at the meeting place at night, no one is there. The next morning, Stasi officers arrest the teenagers. Heidi – gets a message from her parents in Potsdam that they are not coming back from the West, she should try to escape. She is afraid of this. She explores the shore at Griebnitzsee for Christian and finds out when the border patrol will be relieved. His plan is risky; the first deaths occur at the Wall. On 29 November he swims across the Havel. The events of the late summer of ’61 have left a lasting impression on the seventy-year-old pupils of the Keppler School, and have welded them together. They have tried to keep in touch over the years, and since the fall of the Wall they have been coming together again regularly for class reunions. The story of this school class reflects the absurdity of the Cold War, the contradictions of the time are united in this microcosm. Camera: Raphael Beinder Editing: Ollie Lanvermann Music: PC Nackt Cast: Vincent Redetzki, Alexander Pensel, Johannes Klaußner, Jella Haase, Sarah Horvath, Isabel Bongard, Maren Eggert, Anja Schneider, Anna Lena Klenke, Uwe Preuss, Horst Kotterbra and many others.

Broadcast date Am 3. November 2015 um 22.35 Uhr bei Servus TV
Length 90 Minuten
Written and directed by: Ben von Grafenstein (Regie & Buch), Michael Klette (Buch), Dagmar Wittmers (Interviews)
Editorial advisor: Patricia Schlesinger, Jürgen Meier-Beer (NDR), Jens Stubenrauch (RBB) Klaus Bassiner, Christoph Menardi (ServusTV)
Production: Ulrike Römhild
Line producer: Frank Zahl, Anke Meyer
Producer: Brigitta Schübeler
Executive producer: Hartmut Klenke
Filming location: Berlin