Leo and Claire

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German title Leo and Claire
Original title Leo and Claire
Country of production Germany
original language German
Publishing year 2001
length 103 minutes
Age rating FSK 12
Director Joseph Vilsmaier
script Reinhard Klooss ,
Klaus Richter ,
Joseph Vilsmaier
production Reinhard Kloos,
Joseph Vilsmaier
music Gert Wilden
camera Joseph Vilsmaier
cut Hans Funck

Leo and Claire is a German movie from 2001 by Joseph Vilsmaier with Michael Degen , Franziska Petri and Suzanne von Borsody in the leading roles.


Germany between 1933 and 1942 : Leo Katzenberger runs a shoe store in Nuremberg . He is a jew. And he rented a studio to Irene. Irene is young, blonde, sexy and a photographer . Enough material for the middle-class neighborhood to talk about gossip. She seals Leo a relationship with her. Leo is denounced, arrested for racial disgrace and ultimately sentenced to death .

The trial culminates in the judge's argument that racial disgrace is worse than murder .


The film is based on real events: it was the most famous case of perversion of the law during the Nazi era. The Katzenberger case is also dealt with in the US feature film Judgment of Nuremberg , which deals with the Nuremberg legal process in which Judge Oswald Rothaug was sentenced to life imprisonment after the war .

The basis of the film is the book "The Jew and the Girl" by Christiane Kohl . The title of the book, which emphasizes the relationship between Leo Katzenberger and Irene Seiler / Scheffler, was changed by the producers at the request of the Katzenberger family to bring Leo's wife Claire, who plays a supporting role in the story, to the fore.


“The fact-based film gives away a lot of its potential effect through an uninspired staging, the sometimes too woodcut-like figure drawing and the not consistently safe ensemble. Nonetheless, through some succinct scenes, the captivating play of the two main characters and the enormity of the unpunished judicial murder, it stimulates discussion about the unresolved German past. "

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Release certificate for Leo and Claire . Voluntary self-regulation of the film industry , February 2014 (PDF; test number: 89 550 V).
  2. Cinema: "Leo and Claire" - The naked facts at sueddeutsche.de
  3. Leo and Claire. In: Lexicon of International Films . Film service , accessed October 11, 2016 .Template: LdiF / Maintenance / Access used