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Everything over 3 ½ hours in the ARD media library and in the first

There are just a few hours that turn a whole life upside down: the event film 3 ½ hours tells about the private effects of the historic event on the 60th anniversary of the building of the Berlin Wall. Because the elaborate production takes place in a train that travels from Munich to East Berlin on August 13, 1961. When the news spread that the inner-German border had been sealed off, passengers from the GDR were faced with decisions with unimaginable consequences.

From today you can 3 ½ hours online first in der ARD media library stream. In the following article you will find all the information about the film event, the accompanying themed evening in the first and more.

You should know that about the 3½ hours event film

The special thing about the event film is not only its concentrated time frame, but also its location. The focus of 3 ½ hours is or rolls a so-called interzonal train, the passengers over the inner German border between GDR and FRG transported. When the GDR citizens started their journey home in Munich, they had no idea what to expect on the journey to Berlin.

Check out the trailer for 3½ hours:

3 ½ hours – Trailer (German) HD


Singer Carla (Alli Neumann) is on her way back with her band after a gig when she came from the build of the wall learns. Her decision has been made: instead of traveling to the GDR, she wants to make a fresh start in the West. But her great love Sasha (Jeff Wilbusch) refuses to get out.

Marlis (Susanne Bormann), on the other hand, sees her family in danger. Because the staunch communist is married to an engineer critical of the regime (Jan Krauter) who wants to stay in the Federal Republic.

On the east side, engine driver Edith (Luisa-Céline Gaffron) is preparing to take over the train. But secretly she dreams, like the present DEFA film reporter Kurt (Vincent Redetzki), of the “Wild West”.

3 ½ hours based on real events

These fateful decisions were not made out of thin air, after all, the construction of the wall called into question the life plans of millions of people. That applied too Passengers on interzonal trainsthat operated between the two German states on August 13, 1961.

Michael Lehmann, Managing Director of the Studio Hamburg Production Group, explains the true background of 3 ½ hours as follows:

The film is based in part on real events. This train really existed. From one second to the next, the passengers were faced with the decision of whether to end the train journey at the last German train station before the inner-German border or whether they should take the very last chance to stay in the West. In reality, however, the train went from Bremen via East Berlin to Dresden. The grandparents of our author Robert Krause sat in one of the compartments and had to make the existential decision: Do I leave my home or do I go back?

The TV event 3 ½ hours in the ARD media library and in the first

Those who are curious about the event film are in luck. Because you can already now, several days before the TV premiere, free of charge in the ARD media library stream.

But it doesn’t stop there. As part of the Themed evening 60 years of building the wall in the first the new documentary We Children of the Wall will also be broadcast. In it, people tell how they were influenced by the division of Germany during the years of the Wall between 1961 and 1989. The sometimes harrowing documentary is also available from today in the ARD media library.

Theme evening 60 years of building the Wall in the First: When will 3½ hours be on TV?

As an alternative to streaming in the ARD media library, you can of course also follow the themed evening on August 7, 2021 on television.

Here are the broadcast dates on Saturday, August 7th:

  • 3 ½ hours runs from 8.15 p.m. on the first.
  • We children of the wall runs from 9:50 p.m. on Das Erste.

In addition, on the occasion of the themed evening, you will find additional accompanying content in the ARD media library, such as the true crime story We Children of the Wall – Death in the Baltic Sea, as well as a podcast series and a radio feature about the construction of the Wall and its consequences in the ARD audio library.

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