This article contains references to suicide.
Anders Als Die Andern has to be hands down one the of the most progressive movies of the twentieth century. It was one of the first films to portray homosexuality in a positive light. Despite being released in nearly one hundred years ago, it covers topics still debated today- the futility of ex-gay therapy, sexual orientation as an innate characteristic of a person, and even shows the very beginning of western cultures differentiating between gay and transgender.
The main protagonist is violinist Paul Körner, played by Weimar hottie Conrad Veidt.
Paul and his violin student Kurt Sivers fall in love and have a variety of cute scenes together-
After his parents really start pressuring him to marry a local woman, Paul comes out to them by sending them to see a presentation given by a sexologist who delivers the following line:
Pretty much on par with modern thinking.
Overall, this movie is heartwrenchingly tragic. The audience follows Paul as he's blackmailed by a former lover. At the time, homosexuality was actually illegal in Germany and he could easily be prosecuted.
For several scenes, Paul tries his best to hide the extortion from Kurt, but it's getting apparent that he is in greater and greater danger.
Kurt does find out though, and he leaves Paul. They never see each other again.
Franz, the former lover, follows through with his threats and reports Paul to the authorities. The police agree that Paul isn't dangerous at all and hasn't truly done anything wrong, but it doesn't matter. By now, everyone knows Paul's gay. The company hosting his violin recital has dropped him, no one will hire him, and even his own family has written him letters telling him how much of a shame he is. His own father tells him he needs to commit suicide.
Completely heartbroken, he does.
As if the story weren't sad enough, the film really does a good job of developing Paul's character and endearing him to the audience-- like in this scene where Paul recalls being expelled for getting caught with his high school boyfriend.
Other scenes with the sexologist show great insight for the time.here.(Not gonna lie, it will WRECK you.)