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Die große Liebe (1942)

During a leave in Berlin, Lieutenant Paul Wendlandt, a young Luftwaffe pilot, falls for Anna Holberg, a famous singer, who returns his love. But in time of war it is hard to live on love ... See full summary »


Rolf Hansen


Hans Flemming (novel), Peter Groll | 2 more credits »
1 nomination. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Zarah Leander ... Hanna Holberg
Grethe Weiser ... Kaethe, Hannas Zofe
Viktor Staal ... Oberleutnant Paul Wendlandt
Paul Hörbiger ... Alexander Rudnitzky, Komponist
Wolfgang Preiss ... Oberleutnant Von Etzdorf
Hans Schwarz Jr. Hans Schwarz Jr. ... Alfred Vanloo, Artist
Victor Janson Victor Janson ... Mocelli
Leopold von Ledebur ... Herr Westphal
Julia Serda Julia Serda ... Frau Westphal
Paul Bildt Paul Bildt ... Unfreundlicher oberkellner
Erich Dunskus ... Mann, der den Staffelhund mitbringt
Wilhelm Althaus Wilhelm Althaus ... Fliegeroffizier Hauptmann Becker
Olga Engl ... Alte dame im Mietshaus
Karl Etlinger Karl Etlinger ... Mann mit den Eintrittskarten
Ilse Fürstenberg Ilse Fürstenberg ... Luftschutzwartin im Mietshaus


During a leave in Berlin, Lieutenant Paul Wendlandt, a young Luftwaffe pilot, falls for Anna Holberg, a famous singer, who returns his love. But in time of war it is hard to live on love only. The lovers keep being separated on account of Paul's missions and their intended marriage ceremony is constantly postponed. To cap it all, misunderstanding sets in between Paul and Anna. Will they ever become the happy couple they deserve to be? Written by Guy Bellinger

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

love | propaganda | based on novel | See All (3) »


Drama | Romance


See all certifications »






Release Date:

11 September 1942 (Netherlands) See more »

Also Known As:

The Great Love See more »

Filming Locations:

Berlin, Germany See more »


Box Office


DEM3,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universum Film (UFA) See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


German censorship visa # B.57295 delivered on 10-6-1942 (Jugendfrei). See more »


Referenced in Kiss of the Spider Woman (1985) See more »


Ich weiß, es wird einmal ein Wunder gescheh'n
Music by Michael Jary
Lyrics by Bruno Balz
Performed by Zarah Leander
See more »

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User Reviews

Worth seeing for the songs only
17 April 2001 | by ChWasserSee all my reviews

In the 12 years that were the "1000-jähriges Reich" the UFA produced four types of movies. First, there were films like Leni Riefenstahl's "Triumph des Willens" which had the purpose of winning more and more social strata over to the ideas of fascism ('Führerprinzip', 'Volksgemeinschaft', 'Opferbereitschaft', etc.). Recruitment by means of impressive visual iconography.

Secondly the ministry of propaganda tried to prepare the Germans for the so-called 'Endlösung' by intensifying the existing anti-Semitism to the most extreme degree with films like Veit Harlan's notorious "Jud Süß". These films are the most vile and abhorrent (but also the most clumsy and gross) concoctions in film-history.

In the last years of WWII the UFA put great effort in so-called 'Durchhaltefilme' (most infamous example: Harlan's "Kolberg"). With these Goebbels tried to force the war-weary soldiers and civilians to hold out to the end and keep on fighting to the last bullet.

However, the most popular and successful UFA-movies during the third Reich did not belong to these three categories, but were primarily made in order to entertain the audience and take it's mind off the war. The propaganda for the Nazi-cause in these films was much more subtle (yet still evident in most cases). "Die große Liebe" is a prime example for such an 'UFA-Unterhaltungsfilm', because it was seen by 28 million viewers till the end of the war (and thus still holds the record for any film in Germany as far as I know; for comparison "Titanic" had 'only' 17 million viewers, and that was considered a unique success). Nevertheless "Die große Liebe" is almost forgotten today, albeit every German still knows the two songs that Zarah Leander sings in this film: "Ich weiß, es wird einmal ein Wunder geschehen" and "Davon geht die Welt nicht unter". The lyrics of these songs seem to be smarter than their author, because they work both as 'Durchhaltelieder' (as intended) and as sarcastic commentaries on the last years of the 3rd Reich. As such they were used by directors like Fassbinder and Vilsmaier.

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