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I'll second that recommendation. A bloody great movie with a truly happy ending you just don't see coming. I actually dabbed back a tear which I haven't done with a movie since "Snoopy Come Home."

There's a moment in a scene near the beginning that doesn't seem to make sense at first ('sit on your hands") and then when it pays off, you suddenly realise just how teutonically ruthless, petty and all encompassing the Stasi could get. They made the Gestapo look like apes with clubs.

A few titbits.
- Shot on location, including using the actual Stasi HQ as the Stasi HQ.
- The actor playing the lead Stasi guy was an East German thespian surveilled by the Stasi who ended up reading his own records just like his character did after the Wall fell.
- If you like 60s/70s electropunk tech (valve amps meets transistors), then there's some seriously pornographic moments in the film. In fact the whole ambience from new brutalist archectiture to vinyl trenchcoats to flared sideburns reminds you of 70s Danish porn except they're fucking with people's lives instead of just fucking. There's a definite 70s Cronenberg meets JG Ballard vibe there albeit mashed up through a weird German dark night of the soul under sodium lights thing. But it's not ponderous. The story unfolds as smoothly and powerfully as a Merc on an autoban.
- even though it's set in 8the 0s, East Germany was well behind the times which is why I keep mentioning the 70s here.
- the co-writer and director said the overall idea came to him from a vision of someone forced to listen to music they didn't understand or like. That makes sense when you watch the thing.

Really guys, do yourself a favour. "The Lives Of Others" is one steadily simmering, note-perfect, black-humoured thriller cum weirdo love story. Certainly one of the best films I've seen this century.

Also there's another scene at the beginning which gives you an insight into how Tony runs his classroom.

I rented this like 4 months ago from bigpond movies, still have it, have only seen the first 20 minutes, 3 times, I really liked them. One day i shall watch the whole thing.

Well, as long as she doesn't remind you of the time you picked Santa's nose.
That could be embarrassing.

I'm worried that Nabakov knows all about how I run my classroom. I try to keep to myself the playing favourites, the random punishments and the fact that I "note for further attention" any student who criticises the Demons.

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