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The Black Brothers

Original title: Die Schwarzen Brüder
German title: Die Schwarzen Brüder
99 min
Germany, Switzerland, Italy
from 10 years
Direction: Xavier Koller
Script: Fritjof Hohagen, Klaus Richter, based on the novel by Lisa Tetzner
Cast: Jürgen Tarrach Moritz Bleibtreu


2013 | German Focus

Additional Information
Felix von Muralt
Gion Reto Killias
Balz Bachmann
Dschoint Ventschr Filmproduktion AG, enigma film, STARHAUS Filmproduktion, NDR, WDR, ARTE, Herold Productions

Ticino, in the 19th century. Giorgio grew up in a poor peasant family. When his mother has an accident and urgently needs a doctor, his father is faced with a difficult choice: either he lets his wife die, or he sells his son to a child trafficker. Giorgio, who can not watch his mother suffer, agrees to go along with a man called Luini. Together with 13 other peasant boys Giorgio is to be sold to Milan chimney sweepers, who then send the lean children through the narrow, smoky chimneys. This work is dangerous, and the reward is just a thin soup and a place to sleep in the cold. Only sometimes they receive a little tip from the customers. But these few lire are still mostly snatched away from the chimney sweeper boys by a gang of children, the “wolves”. Giorgio gradually realises that he must fight against this injustice. He, his friend Alfredo and the other chimney sweeper boys from Ticino found the “Black Brothers” society. They fight together not only against the “wolves”, but also against their greatest enemy, the trafficker Luini. Film version of the two-volume novel by Lisa Tetzner and her husband, Kurt Held, from 1941, which has been translated into numerous languages worldwide since its publication and is considered one of the most widely read juvenile books.

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