Out of all the movies we watched in class, Good Bye, Lenin! was the film I enjoyed the most (so far). It was funny and entertaining, and it also showcased familial values at the same time. The dilemma of the story was a choice between two goods — a moral dilemma — which made it more difficult for Alex to decide. He had to choose between his mom’s life and his own integrity — I understand why he chose the former!
In the film, Alex went through great lengths just to save his mother. He and Denis had to create fake broadcasts just to back up the web of lies that he created just so his mother would not go into shock. I found it noble yet frustrating at the same time. I honestly think that he could have saved himself and his family a whole lot of trouble if he just told his mom the truth at the start, or at least gradually. If that had happened to me, I think I would automatically choose to just come clean to my own mother, little by little. I would think that my mom would deserve to know the truth about the outside world. But then again, if Alex did not create the huge lie that their country was still under a communist regime, then there would have been no conflict, no plot, and of course, no movie.
Although I did not approve of the means, I did understand his end goal/purpose. He felt like it was the only way to keep his mother safe. I understood the love he had for his mom — it was evident. This fact was what I appreciated most in the film. I thought the film was going to be a political one; I was pleasantly surprised when the central theme of the movie was actually family. I also admired the fact that the characters were well-developed — it helped me empathize with the love they had for each other a little bit more. From start to finish, Alex’ persona was consistent. He was known as the quiet boy with a huge heart — a heart for what he values (which was shown when he fought against the government at the start of the film) and a heart that is filled with love for the woman who raised him (which was shown throughout the entire film as he lied to save her life). Christiane, his mom, was the traditional and conservative citizen whose beliefs opposed her son’s, but she knew in her heart that before being this type of person, she is a mother who loves her children. It was beautiful to witness her knowing about the lies Alex told to save her life and pretending she did not actually know. It was a simple scene, yet it showed to me how much she loved and appreciated the efforts of her family.
Good Bye, Lenin! was a unique way of telling the story of a son’s love for his mother. It was historical, comedic, and touching all at the same time.