is a 1993 German war film directed by Joseph Vilsmaier, following a platoon of Heer
soldiers through their service in Russia fighting the Soviet Union
, centred around, naturally
, the Battle of Stalingrad. Along the way, the brutality of the conflict they find themselves in leaves them demoralized, as they try to find a way to cope with the war.
This film provides examples of:
- Child Soldiers: A young Russian boy named Kolya is captured by the platoon after attempting to attack them with a grenade.
- Downer Ending: The remaining main characters are implied to freeze to death
- Go-Karting with Bowser: Narrowly averted. At one point the Germans and Russians call a truce to collect their wounded and dead, and some even start sharing food with each other, until single shot from Rollo brings the tentative peace to a violent end.
- Grave Robbing: The soldiers steal good-quality boots from corpses, and a few later steal doctor-signed passes in a desperate attempt to be airlifted out with the wounded.
- Handicapped Badass: Hauptmann Hermann Musk, whose Establishing Character Moment has him quickly affix his prosthetic arm before leading the platoon on an assault against a heavily guarded factory.
- I Have You Now, My Pretty: The Russian sniper Irina is found tied up to a bed Haller's stronghold. It's clear she's been used as a 'comfort woman', and the protagonists even plan to take turns doing the same. Hans puts a stop to it and lets her go, however. Hans at first was conflicted over whether or not to help her, kill her, or rape her. "Fick mich oder schiess mich!"
- One Steve Limit: Averted. When a young private tells Lance Corporal Reiser his name is Müller, his response is "We've got too many of those", and nicknames hims GG (GeGe).
- Reds with Rockets: The primary antagonists.
- Shirtless Scene: The opening scene in Italy is laden with it, though with less focus on the women at the Italian beach.
- The Squadette: Irina, a Russian sniper the unit encounter several times.