The movie, Night Crossing portrays an East German family about the year of 1978. This was right after they stopped allowing East Germans to travel freely back and forth East and West Germany. This is just one more of the acts furthering the restrictions placed on East Germans. Others included requesting visas to leave the East and being constantly in fear that a spy would report them to the SS for being “unpatriotic” when found even speaking about other ideas, or owning books that weren’t the communistic ideology. In the movie, Night Crossing, the characters develop a need to be free, a desperation to be free, to do anything it takes.
In the first scenes, Lukas Keller, the young teen, manages to visit his girlfriend on the West side of Berlin. It was stated, later in the movie, that Lukas had several books considered unpatriotic, because the authors were West Germans. Still further into the movie, a classmate of his accidentally reports him to an SS supporter. The student didn’t know what was wrong with Lukas, only that he had disappeared. He wanted to aid in his discovery. Turns out, he only gave the SS a valid reason for what they did.
What they did stroke a chord, recalled of the holocaust era, when they would murder ruthlessly, because they could. Striking first, without thought or care of whom they are killing. This is what they did to Lukas. Lukas was so very desperate to gain his freedom, he attempted to escape. At first he was only able to escape through temporary visits to his girlfriend in the West. Next, he gained insight from the Western Germans, through their books. He brought them back with him, and spoke quietly to his classmates about the brand new ideas. They all, even the adults, spoke quietly about doing something, anything, but never did. Except Lukas… He went to the guard tower late that first night, with the intent to gain his freedom anyway he could. In an odd way… he did.