Die Welle (The Wave)

Die Welle or The Wave is a German political thriller made in 2008 directed by Dennis Gansel and based on the book The Wave by Morton Rhue. I discovered this movie about eight years ago and it has just stuck with me. The movie goes with a teacher asking his students if they believe that another dictator could rise to power and the students do not think so. They believe their generation is wiser and would be able to see the signs and stop it before it happens. This leads to the teacher showing them how easy it can be to be tricked. He starts an experiment tells the students what to wear to class, what to call him, and where they can and cannot sit depending on their grades. The class decides to give itself a name (The Wave) and a hand sign. Soon things are moved outside of the class room where The wave students only hang out with each other and individual personalities change into a group conscious. The group bullies’ others to either reform or leave and many reform to not be outcast. The teacher finds himself as the leader of this group that bullies, excludes, and destroys property all in his name. they do as he asks and when he decides the experiment has gone too far and tries to call it off it is already too late. Some students are so absorbed into the wave, it gives them a family, acceptance, and guidance. I will not ruin the ending for you but it is heart racing scary in some ways stuff. It raises the question on human behavior and the group mentality. These young people believe they could not be brainwashed and they were. This story was written by an American but the Adaptation to a German film makes a bigger impact. They have faced this before, it is in their history. They try so hard to forget the past and move forward but this movie shows it is easy to not see the issue on the outside when one is so deep on the inside of the problem. This movie is a must see if you enjoy sociology, psychology, thrillers, and political dramas. This post was rather difficult for me because it was hard to explain how I feel about this movie and how scary it was to realize some of human nature. People says it can’t happen again but, this movie shows how easy it can be to fall into line without even noticing.

4 thoughts on “Die Welle (The Wave)

  1. Thank you for reminding me of an old film that actually made a great impact on me. I actually don’t remember in what context I watched this film, – whether it was in school or in TV, I must have been too focussed on the film itself. I agree that it’s a great film and a must-see although it sometimes scares me to see these films because I’m afraid someone will take the content into action in real life. Just like with the SAW movies. But for sociological reasons, I agree it’s a must to watch. Maybe try to split your review up into more paragraphs than one, it would make it easier to read, but other than that, it’s short and good.


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