Downfall (2004) Poster


Ulrich Matthes: Joseph Goebbels



  • Joseph Goebbels : I feel no sympathy. I repeat, I feel no sympathy! The German people chose their fate. That may surprise some people. Don't fool yourself. We didn't force the German people. They gave us a mandate, and now their little throats are being cut!

  • Adolf Hitler : General von Greim, I appoint you to Commander in Chief of the Air Force and General Field Marshal. A large responsibility rests on your shoulders. You must shake up the entire air force. Many mistakes have been made, so be ruthless. Life never forgives weakness. This so called humanity... is just priests' drivel. Compassion is a primal sin. Compassion for the weak is a betrayal of nature.

    Joseph Goebbels : The strongest can only be victorious by eradicating the weak.

    Adolf Hitler : I have always obeyed this law of nature by never permitting myself to feel compassion. I have ruthlessly suppressed domestic opposition and brutally crushed the resistance of alien races. It's the only way to deal with it.

    [Linge enters with a folder in hand] 

    Adolf Hitler : Apes, for example, trample every outsider to death. What goes for apes goes even more for human beings.

    [Hitler reads the folder] 

    Adolf Hitler : Himmler, in Lübeck, has made an offer to surrender to the western powers through Count Bernadotte... according to a report by English radio.

    [finishes reading] 

    Adolf Hitler : Himmler... Of all people, Himmler! The truest of the true... This is the worst betrayal of all! Göring, yeah; he was always corrupt, of course. Speer, yeah: an idealistic, unpredictable artist. All the others, yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah!

    [puts folder down] 

    Adolf Hitler : But not Himmler. Has he gone crazy?

    [stands up] 

    Adolf Hitler : He claimed authority by saying I was sick, perhaps already dead!


    Adolf Hitler : Please leave me alone with Lord von Greim and Frau Reitsch.

    [Everyone except the following stands up] 

    Adolf Hitler : Oh, and bring me Fegelein.

    Heinz Linge, Kammerdiener : My Führer, we don't know where he is.

    Adolf Hitler : But he's Himmler's adjutant. He must be here.

    General der Infanterie Wilhelm Burgdorf : We haven't seen him for days.

    Adolf Hitler : I want his report at once!

    [Everyone leaves, and Goebbels is about to step out] 

    Adolf Hitler : Please stay, Doctor.

  • Joseph Goebbels : Surrender? Never! This is outrageous! I've conquered Berlin against the Reds several years ago, and will defend the city to the last breath against them! The few hours that I've yet to live as German Chancellor, I will not use them to put my signature on a document of surrender!

    General der Artillerie Helmuth Weidling : We must protect the civilian population!

    General der Infanterie Hans Krebs : The Führer's order is final!

    General der Infanterie Wilhelm Burgdorf : No matter what happens, we will protect to the end!

    General der Infanterie Hans Krebs : We cannot give up!

    [Fritzsche steps out to Rochus Misch] 

    Walter Hewel : We have to start negotiations!

    Joseph Goebbels : I repeat: I will never sign to a surrender!

    [Burgdorf follows Fritzsche] 

    Hans Fritzsche : I need you to send a telegraph to Marshal Zhukov immediately.

    Rochus Misch : Marshal Zhukov?

    General der Infanterie Wilhelm Burgdorf : What's going on here?

    Hans Fritzsche : This is madness. We have to give the city to the Russians.

    [Burgdorf pulls out a gun] 

    General der Infanterie Wilhelm Burgdorf : Then I have to shoot you. The Führer commands to prohibit any surrender!

    [Wielding grabs Burgdorf's arm as the latter shoots] 

  • Adolf Hitler : You see, gentlemen? I'll be proved right. Wenck will come.

    [leaves generals] 

    Adolf Hitler : Wenck will come.

    [passes by guards who salute to him] 

    General der Artillerie Helmuth Weidling : I want to immediately know if it's possible for Wenck to attack or not.

    General der Infanterie Hans Krebs : It's unlikely that Wenck's small force can attack the Red Army...

    Joseph Goebbels : [interrupts Krebs]  How dare you say it's unlikely?

    General der Infanterie Hans Krebs : Wenck has nothing to confront the Red Army!

    General der Artillerie Helmuth Weidling : Why don't you tell the Führer? Have you all gone crazy?

    General der Infanterie Wilhelm Burgdorf : The Führer knows it himself, but he will never surrender, and we won't either! I went through that before, and once is enough!

    General der Artillerie Helmuth Weidling : Come on, I have to get out of here.

    [leaves with Mohnke] 

  • Martin Bormann : [reading folder in hand]  My Führer, following your decision to stay in Berlin, do I have your approval as Vice Chancellor to immediately take charge of the entire Reich with the necessary power and authority? If I receive no answer by 10 p.m., I will assume that you have been incapacitated. I will serve the well-being of our people and fatherland.

    [closes folder and puts it down] 

    Martin Bormann : He's betraying Germany... and you!

    Walter Hewel : Göring's concern isn't unjustified. If our communication system breaks down, which could happen at any time, we'd be cut off from the world; we could no longer pass on orders.

    Joseph Goebbels : I see it differently. Göring wants to seize power. I never trusted that mob he gathered at Obersalzberg; it stinks of a coup.

    Adolf Hitler : That failure. That sponger... A parvenu! A lazybones!

    [Albert Speer returns while Hitler rants offscreen] 

    Adolf Hitler : How dare he declare me unable to act? Tomorrow he might declare me dead!

    Albert Speer : Hello, Frau Junge.

    Traudl Junge : Herr Speer. How did you get into Berlin?

    Albert Speer : It wasn't easy, but I must speak with the Führer.

    Heinz Linge, Kammerdiener : I'd wait here if I were you.

    Adolf Hitler : The Luftwaffe... What did he do with it? That was reason enough to execute him! That morphine addict... helped to corrupt this country! And now this...

    [Hewel looks down in disappointment] 

    Adolf Hitler : He betrayed me of all people! Me of all people!


    Adolf Hitler : I want Göring to be deprived of power and removed from office. If I don't survive the war, that man is to be executed at once.

  • Joseph Goebbels : I won't use my final hours as Reich Chancellor to sign a statement of surrender!

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