Blu-ray, DVD Release: The Bridge (1959)

Blu-ray & DVD Release Date: June 23, 2015
Price: DVD $29.95, Blu-ray $39.95
Studio: Criterion


The astonishing The Bridge, by Bernhard Wicki (The Longest Day), was the first major antiwar film to come out of Germany after World War II, as well as the nation’s first postwar film to be widely shown internationally, even securing an Oscar nomination.

The Bridge (1959)

The Bridge (1959)

Set near the end of the war, the 1959 war drama follows a group of teenage boys in a small town as they contend with everyday matters like school, girls, and parents, before enlisting as soldiers and being forced to defend their home turf in a confused, terrifying battle.

An expressively shot, emotionally bruising drama, The Bridge dared to humanize young German soldiers at a historically tender moment, and proved influential for the coming generation of New German Cinema auteurs.

Presented in German with English subtitles, Criterion’s Blu-ray and DVD editions of the film include the following:

  • New 2K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
    • New interview with writer Gregor Dorfmeister, on whose autobiographical novel the film is based
    • New interview with filmmaker Volker Schlöndorff about the film’s impact on German cinema
    • Interview from 1989 with director Bernhard Wicki
    • Excerpt from a 2007 documentary by Elisabeth Wicki-Endriss, Wicki’s wife, featuring test reel footage from the shoot
  • An essay by film critic Terrence Rafferty
Buy or Rent The Bridge (1959)
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About Laurence

Founder and editor Laurence Lerman saw Alfred Hitchcock’s North by Northwest when he was 13 years old and that’s all it took. He has been writing about film and video for more than a quarter of a century for magazines, anthologies, websites and most recently, Video Business magazine, where he served as the Reviews Editor for 15 years.