Krabat (2008) Poster

Krabat (2008)

  • Rate: 6.2/10 total 2,759 votes 
  • Genre: Drama | Fantasy | Thriller
  • Release Date: 7 September 2008 (Ukraine)
  • Runtime: 120 min
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Krabat (2008)


Krabat 2008tt0772181.jpg poster

  • IMDb page: Krabat (2008)
  • Rate: 6.2/10 total 2,759 votes 
  • Genre: Drama | Fantasy | Thriller
  • Release Date: 7 September 2008 (Ukraine)
  • Runtime: 120 min
  • Filming Location: Kaunertal, Tirol, Austria
  • Budget: €10,000,000(estimated)
  • Gross: $9,265,782(Germany)(16 November 2008)
  • Director: Marco Kreuzpaintner
  • Stars: David Kross, Christian Redl and Daniel Brühl
  • Original Music By: Annette Focks   
  • Soundtrack: Allein Allein
  • Sound Mix: DTS | Dolby Digital
  • Plot Keyword: One Word Title | Grinder | Rear Nudity | Mill | Crow

Writing Credits By:

    (in alphabetical order)

  • Michael Gutmann  writer
  • Marco Kreuzpaintner  writer
  • Otfried Preußler  novel

Known Trivia

  • Daniel Brühl has said this was the first time ever he agreed to be in a film without having read the screenplay or knowing who would be directing.

Goofs: Revealing mistakes: In several shots, you can see the scar of the evil sorcerer isn't attached to his face. They tried to hide this makeup mistake by blurring the area in post-production.

Plot: A boy learns the black arts from an evil sorcerer.  »

Story: A boy learns the black arts from an evil sorcerer.

FullCast & Crew

Produced By:

  • Gabriela Bacher known as executive producer
  • Christian Balz known as co-producer
  • Jakob Claussen known as producer
  • Nicola Fletcher known as associate producer
  • Stefan Gärtner known as co-producer (as Dr. Stefan Gärtner)
  • Nick Hamson known as producer
  • Jens Oberwetter known as line producer
  • Ulrike Putz known as producer (as Uli Putz)
  • Lars Sylvest known as producer
  • Bernd Wintersperger known as producer
  • Thomas Wöbke known as producer

FullCast & Crew:

  • David Kross known as Krabat
  • Daniel Brühl known as Tonda
  • Christian Redl known as Meister – Evil Sorcerer
  • Robert Stadlober known as Lyschko
  • Paula Kalenberg known as Kantorka
  • Hanno Koffler known as Juro
  • Anna Thalbach known as Worschula
  • Charly Hübner known as Michal
  • Moritz Grove known as Merten
  • Tom Wlaschiha known as Hanzo
  • Sven Hönig known as Andrusch
  • Stefan Haschke known as Staschko
  • David Fischbach known as Lobosch
  • Daniel Steiner known as Petar
  • Tom Lass known as Kubo
  • Daniel Fripan known as Kito
  • Ionut Baias known as Baro
  • Peter Rappenglück known as Pesthelfer #1
  • Alexej Boris known as Pesthelfer #2
  • Carmen Ungureanu known as Krabats Mutter
  • Mac Steinmeier known as Gevatter
  • Otto Sander known as Narrator (voice)



Supporting Department

Makeup Department:
  • Georg Korpas known as special makeup effects artist
  • Heike Merker known as makeup artist

Art Department:

  • Oana Babes known as art department coordinator
  • Klaus Bienen known as carpenter
  • Adrian Curelea known as assistant art director
  • Florin Gavrila known as scenic painter
  • Ulrike Gojowczyk known as stand-by props
  • David Hoffmann known as property master
  • Grit Kronacher known as set dresser
  • Joachim Monninger known as construction coordinator
  • Christian Niculescu known as art director: Rumania
  • Johannes Pfaller known as assistant property master
  • Ionel Popa known as propmaker
  • Geaniloni Sandru known as scenic painter
  • Gina Stancu known as assistant set decorator
  • Eva Stiebler known as assistant production designer
  • Rainer Stock known as conceptual artist
  • Michael Summ known as property master
  • Waleska Theis known as assistant set decorator
  • Wolfgang Wrede known as painter
  • Olga Wukounig known as draftsman




Production Companies:

  • B.A. Filmproduktion
  • Brass Hat Films
  • Castel Film Romania
  • Claussen Wöbke Putz Filmproduktion
  • Krabat Filmproduktion
  • MSM Studios
  • Seven Pictures Film

Other Companies:

  • ARRI Sound  sound re-recording
  • PPA Film GmbH  dubbing
  • Toccata Film  post-production supervision
  • Tonstudio Hanse Warns  foley stage


  • 20th Century Fox of Germany (2008) (Germany) (theatrical)
  • Transformer (2009) (Japan) (theatrical)
  • Twin Film (2009) (Netherlands) (theatrical)
  • Volga (2009) (Russia) (theatrical)
  • A Plus Films (2008) (Turkey) (all media)
  • Accent Film Entertainment (2010) (Australia) (DVD)
  • Califórnia Home Vídeo (2010) (Brazil) (DVD)
  • Condor Entertainment (2011) (France) (all media)
  • Peccadillo Pictures (2011) (UK) (all media)
  • Video Film Express (2009) (Netherlands) (DVD)



Other Stuff

Visual Effects by:
  • Andreas Alesik known as digital artist
  • Jörg Baier known as digital compositor
  • Sacha Bertram known as visual effects consultant: pre-production
  • Stefan Essl known as visual effects editor
  • Stefan Galleithner known as lead technical director
  • Thomas Grummt known as animator
  • Bernhard Haux known as animator
  • Viktoria Herberts known as digital compositor
  • Nina Knott known as digital intermediate producer
  • Eva Kunze known as visual effects coordinator
  • Sabine Laimer known as digital compositor
  • Alex Lemke known as visual effects supervisor
  • Lutz Lemke known as main title designer & animator
  • Norbert Ruf known as senior compositor
  • Martin Saechsinger known as technical director
  • Christoph Schinko known as character animator
  • Christoph Schinko known as lead character rigger
  • Christian Schnellhammer known as compositing trainee
  • Udo Smutny known as digital compositor
  • Nando Stille known as technical director
  • Denis Trutanic known as senior camera technical director
  • Christian Wieser known as senior compositing artist
  • Klaus Wuchta known as senior compositing artist
  • Florian Zachau known as senior compositor

Release Date:

  • Canada 7 September 2008 (Toronto International Film Festival)
  • Ukraine 7 September 2008
  • Germany 9 October 2008
  • Switzerland 30 October 2008 (German speaking region)
  • Japan 31 October 2008 (Deutsche Filmfestival in Tokyo)
  • Austria 28 November 2008
  • Germany 7 February 2009 (Berlin International Film Festival)
  • Kazakhstan 28 May 2009
  • Russia 28 May 2009
  • USA 9 June 2009 (Seattle International Film Festival)
  • Belgium 10 October 2009 (Gent International Film Festival)
  • Netherlands 17 December 2009
  • Belgium 27 January 2010
  • Spain 29 January 2010
  • Mexico 9 July 2010
  • Australia 25 August 2010 (video premiere)
  • France 1 June 2011 (DVD premiere)
  • UK 20 June 2011 (video premiere)



Filmography links and data courtesy of The Internet Movie Database

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Posted on March 30, 2012 by Harry in Movies | Tags: , , , .


  1. lual from Jena, Germany
    30 Mar 2012, 9:58 pm

    "Krabat" has been one of the classics of youth literature in Germanyfor almost 40 years and one wonders why nobody tried to make a movieout of it earlier. Actually, it is not that hard to answer thisquestion since "Krabat" is a very grim and dark tale with some gruesomedeaths, an ending that comes across as rather anticlimactic and aboveall an incredible amount of religious symbolism (even though the bookis no sappy Christian novel) that would make it hard to market it.Parents would not go and see this movie with their kids and youngpeople might not find it cool enough. Fortunately, the producers weresmart enough to think of another target group: grown-ups who read thebook in their youth and have been haunted by it ever since.

    Some changes have been made. The symbolism is reduced, the role of the"Kantorka" is slightly expanded, which makes the showdown a little moreexciting and Tonda's love to Worschula plays a bigger part than it doesin the novel. Make no mistake, though, both women still have smallroles. The story is shortened by one year (so that it now covers onlytwo years instead of three which ultimately saves the life of one ofthe boys – and to those who only watched the movie but haven't read thebook: It is not the guy you think it might be) and the story centerseven more on Krabat than in the book, which means that all scenes thatexplain more about the master such as the sorcerer's duel and the tripto the Elector in Dresden were left out.

    I don't mind these changes too much. While the trip to Dresden was inmy opinion one of the most memorable scenes of the book I canunderstand why it had to go. There are some other minor changes which Iwon't go into. But even with the shortening of the story, Kreuzpaintnerstill had a lot left in his hands that he had to press into two hours.And I have to say that he does not entirely succeed. Kreuzpaintner doessomething Preußler does a lot in his book: He only hints at many thingsand hopes that the viewer will link the parts together. But Preußlerhad a much bigger story than Kreuzpaintner does and often this makesthe movie feel rushed or incomplete. But still, the story is touchingand gripping and in my opinion totally satisfying.

    The cinematography is outstanding. The images are truly beautiful, andthe aerial shots even allow the viewer to see the entire set.Incredible work has been done here. Now, in most big German productionsthere is one scene in which the director decides to go totallyHollywood and usually this ends in a disaster. The same thingunfortunately happens here when the boys get into a fight with somemarauding soldiers. Kreuzpaintner tries to out-Scott Ridley Scott hereand the picture is so distorted that not only can you barely see whatis happening but it also really hurts the eyes. What makes this evenworse is that this makes it look like they tried to cover up badfighting stunts with these scenes even though I am sure that they werein fact done well.

    The actors are mainly well cast. Brühl, Redl (especially Redl!),Stadlober all act well and make us forget the actor behind the role(Brühl and Redl succeed better than Stadlober) Hanno Koffler, whom Iusually like a lot, does some over-acting which seems annoying atfirst, but since he plays Juro that might have been a deliberatechoice. Unfortunately, David Kross is a little weak, but this seems tobe the curse of title characters who, after all, are supposed to serveas models for identification. The guy I actually liked best was MoritzGrove, who plays Merten as thoughtful, caring and in the end almosttragic. All in all,it has to be said that the casting agents really didtheir job well in making these guys distinguishable, even though someof their parts are rather small.

    While I liked the set design and the costumes, I was not too pleasedabout the make-up. Smeering some black paint on strategic places on theactors' faces so that they look dirty but still pretty gets on mynerves when it happens through an entire movie. It really looks fakeafter a while and when you get to scenes where the actors show theirshaved armpits, you cannot help but laugh at this pseudo-historicalmess.

    I have to say, in spite of some criticism I really liked the movie andI will recommend it to everyone. To people who read the book it willbring back great childhood memories and others who have not read itwill find the movie entertaining, thrilling and maybe even scary.

    But just like the movie ends on a big "f— you" to the audience I willend this review with my biggest gripe about the movie: Who on earthmade the decision to put such a terrible song at the end of the movie?The picture has such an incredibly beautiful score and does everythingto set the mood right and they actually decide to put some electrodance track over the credits!!!! This must be one of the worst choicesof a film-promoting song in film history! The people behind thisdecision should really lower their heads in shame!

  2. patrickgamer from Canada
    30 Mar 2012, 9:58 pm

    I went to see this last night at the Toronto Film Festival. My wifepicked it out, and I had expected it to be a silly kid's flick aboutmagic and I was happily surprised. Krabat turned out to be a very goodmovie.

    It is not at all cheesy or goofy. I found the screenplay well written,the acting was impressive, and the plot that keeps you engaged. I wouldrecommend this to anyone looking for a change of pace from Americanfantasy flicks.

    The basic story takes place at the end of the 30 years war in Germany.It focuses on a young orphan named Krabat. I won't give any moredetails, except to say that it's an interesting twist on the idea ofmagic.

    I'm not saying it's a 10/10 (I gave it 9) there are a fewinconsistencies in the film, but they exist outside the main line ofthe story, and you don't notice them until after the credits arefinished.

  3. btfilther from Bulgaria
    30 Mar 2012, 9:58 pm

    I am absolutely aesthetically satisfied by this film. So much out ofthe cliché. Great storyboard, visuals, acting and sound. It is actuallya very profound film done with German precision. European film makingin its best form. I haven't read the book and I don't really care aboutit whatsoever as in my opinion the film served its purpose. Passionateactors play combined with beautiful yet depressive atmosphere. Sadlysometimes sites like this one are doing us bad favours, we came to seemedium ratings plus low voting activity and the film is lost…we nevereven give it a chance. Well, that one definitely proves us wrong. Bravoto all of you who took part in it.

  4. Dietmar Budelsky ( from Cologne, Germany
    30 Mar 2012, 9:58 pm

    After watching the film, I was unsure what was wrong with it. Thepictures are magnificent, the acting was OK to good the score was goodand the plot was there. Palpatine replacing the Gevatter was may be OK.I think the Gevatter as described in the book is really hard totransfer onto the screen.

    The magic was changed in a bad way as described in comments before. Thelandscape is changed, too. I did not like this, but one has to see thefilm as an own work. A "Plan 9 from outer space" like goof is theKantorka entering the mill in the night and the journeymen leaving withher in bright daylight only minutes later. But this only explains, whythe film is not a really great one and not, why it is only a film asthousands more.

    After rethinking what did not work, things came back to the missingyear. The point which worked the least in the book is the shortage oftime. Krabat is getting from the newbie to one main antagonist and thepossible successor of the master within three years in a ritual deathcycle lasting one year. So in the book he is able to see the rhythm ofnew trainee to prey only two times completely while other journeymenhad an advance of at least 9 years for this and react accordingly atthe end of the year. And the relationship of Krabat to the Kantorka canbuilt up by very few meetings within year 2 and 3. So the developmentof Krabat himself is very fast and nearly unbelievable in the book.

    By omitting one year in the film, the pace goes over the edge. Toexplain the Krabat/Kantorka relationship, the journeymen have tostumble massively into the town life as positive figures, therefore theawful fight scene. And Krabat has to go to the town on easter himselfand Juro has to catch him in the town (and reveal himself). Theoriginal scene in the book, where Juro is "accidently" burning Krabats'hand is much more appropriate but give not enough time for Krabat tophysically meet the Kantorka during the rest of the film. As a resultof all this, the changing of Krabat during the story is gettingimplausible. So is for an example to add the suicide attempt.

    The film is simply lacking plausibility by telling a story of breakinga cycle in too short time. You can not give the real impression of acycle by only showing it once. An additional hour for the third yearwould have made the film a much better one. Even then, Pumphutt orDresden had to be left out which still changes the picture of themaster, but a film can never suit a novel.

  5. MartinusExLullesdorp from Cologne, Germany
    30 Mar 2012, 9:58 pm

    As some other previous writer I do not intend to spoil contents butnevertheless it may happen. Therefore I checked the spoiler alert. 1) Islowly but surely learn not to expect a movie being exactly like thebook. So I was able to enjoy "Lord of the Rings" which I have read onceevery year in full for several years There are movies like "The Stand".The novel written by Steven King. I never felt more content in a moviewith in-depth knowledge of the book

    Now Krabat: They changed the time back to the 30 year war (No sweat)They left out scenes like the sorcerer fight "Meister" vs "Pumphutt"(to bad) They changed a real funny scene when the soldiers come topress the boys into the Prussian army to a real bad Ridley Scottisch (Ihave stolen this comparison) fight with too fast and bad made fightingscenes. (Very bad) They left out a visit of Krabat and the "Meister" inDresden, which should show Krabat what power being a sorcerer wouldgive him (unlucky) They missed the new mill wheel, which is not a bigdeal. There are some other thing they changed, but not to the bad.

    2) I expected no good, but I was driven by knowing the book and Iwanted to see how they would interpret it. The movie feels like thebook. Starting somewhat easy it gains a lot of tension up to the end.Although I knew what would have to happen I was gripped by it.

    3) They got me with the music which was really good and fitted with agreat scenery. What a landscape, what pictures. Just for that I'd goagain.

    4) I'm no good at rating the acting but Christian Redl did anoutstanding job. The Meister was just a bit too fatherly. I felt as ifthe boys where just fallen out of the book. The Kantorka was somewhattoo maiden, not cool enough and too bodily. Tonda should have been morechiseled. (They missed him having total white hair within one day.) Allin all the acting was quite persuasive.

    5) Music again. I was deep into the movie and still sat with a racingheart when "Allein, Allein" came up. It's like getting a load of icecold water on a your fevered body. I never ever have been so disgusted.

    Conclusion: Well, a movie is a movie and as much people see it as muchopinions are available.

    I do not expect a movie being the book. This one is well done, betterthan most German movies (Besides for instance you like "Das Boot". Thisis one VERY good movie sequel) Krabat takes you away if you allow itto. It delivers real nice landscape pictures and mostly good to verygood acting and persuasive characters.

    If you like it philosophical, just look for other comments. There's alot of deep thinking in this novel of Preussler and I have seldom foundmovies which really transport the in-depth meaning of their basic story(besides for instance "Schindlers Liste")

    I say: go and relish it, regardless whether you know the book. (Closeyour eyes through a certain fight though and your ears during thecredits if you don't leave the move when credits start, like mostpeople nowadays do)


  6. Alamarena from Ireland
    30 Mar 2012, 9:58 pm

    (I will keep this as spoiler-free as I can, mostly checked the box tobe on the safe side).

    I loved this book when I was younger (I'm in my mid-20s now) and Iplayed the part of the "Master" in a school play one year, so I have abit of a connection with the story and was very looking forward toseeing this movie. Overall, I have to say it was decent, but nothing toknock my socks off (7 out of 10). They did have to compress a lot ofthe action, and a lot of the character development suffers (Krabat'sevolving from ambitious prize student to somewhat suspicious to doinghis own thing), though this is always a problem with book adaptationsand not generally something I blame them for. I do have issues withparts of the story that are outright changed, but not necessarily forthe better. While I go back and forth on the showdown scene, thepreviously mentioned "soldiers" scene is absolutely terrible. As asuggestion, the events that lead to Tonda's having gray hair could havebeen covered in a brief flashback (they don't actually occur duringKrabat's time at the mill, anyway), and made room for something else.The acting is very good, especially on the parts of Brühl and Redl; themain character is a bit annoying (he goes from blank-faced boy to angryrebel, skipping the more insightful aspects of Krabat's character -andone of his lines towards the end of the movie was so cheesy I wanted topunch him for it). Scenery and music were nice if a bit Lord of theRings-esquire (the "Gevatter" was totally a Ringwraith before he turnedinto Emperor Palpatine and the Kantorka had some initial backup fromEnya it seemed), though I'll have to agree on the cliché medievalfantasy bit (especially the bad teeth looked fake). I would notrecommend this movie for people who have not read and enjoyed the book,but for those who have, it's quite worthwhile to see, despite all.

  7. KrisNederland from Netherlands
    30 Mar 2012, 9:58 pm

    I went to see this movie a couple of days ago, not knowing what toexpect. I never read the book.

    I kind of liked it, but it wasn't as good as I hoped it would be.

    It was really easy to predict the way the story unfolded and in the endit's just another 'love conquers all' storyline. (which isn't that bad,because we all want love to conquer, don't we?)

    I found the transformation to ravens was very beautifully done. Andthere's the scene when Krabat meets his girl, which was a nice way tovisualize the magic.

    I enjoyed myself with this movie, but I don't think I will remember ita year from now…

  8. Sven P. from Germany
    30 Mar 2012, 9:58 pm

    Went to see the movie yesterday.

    I have been a fan of the krabat-book since i was young and the film,made by Zeman, made me some kind of fanatic and it seems i am not theonly one.

    I read a lot of critics about this films. Other people like me, beingdisappointed what they made of the book, but as a real fan you have tosee it all, even if it breaks your heart. In fact i cannot share mostof the bad reviews about it. It is not a literature film, but i doesnot intend to be it. When you keep that in mind it was entertaining,more like the "Hollywood"-Version of the book.

    OK! The behavior in the film of the boys is not affected by fear, asdescribed in the book and they are more like individuals, than a bandof lost souls. The acting could have been better of some actors, butDaniel Brühl and some others kept the level very high to the point ofhis characters death. For the rest the story was very close to thebook, so it held itself. I think it is important to show their despairand they did with the suicide scene, which is also in the book. Theonly thing i really did not like was the fighting scene in the middleof the movie, which is not in the book. I could hardly watch it. Veryfast and the picture seemed to be broken. It was very eye- and mindhurting for me. Some funny, important scenes from the book are leftout, which might have done the movie good. Why they use Magic is notexplained in the movie and the master is more like a father figure,then the all evil in the book. If they did, then movie would have beena mess. The book tells, that they learn Magic to trick other people, torob them, to betray them, to gain power over them, which is verytempting. It is more like an allegory for the youth in the third Reich.The movie is more like the youth in the 30-years war and their searchfor a home, a base, at all costs.

    But they kept the main aspect. Power can lead you on the wrong way andeverything has its price. This is important.

  9. g-moff from Germany
    30 Mar 2012, 9:58 pm

    The story is set in the European 30-year-war and is about a younghomeless boy (Krabat) who ends up as an apprentice in a mill. Itsmiller is in fact a dark magic master who needs 12 apprentices to getthe mill going. Every year, one of the apprentices has to die to keepthe master alive; this does, no surprise, somehow frighten theapprentices… There is a way to become free again: through the love ofa girl. Etc. etc. guess what happens? Right… The movie is based onOttfried Preußler's "Krabat" novel which I recommend very much. Themovie I don't recommend so much. It starts OK, setting is OK, actorsare OK, Krabat slowly unfolds the mill's secrets – but after about twothirds of the movie, it slows down somehow and you can pretty muchguess what's gonna happen. Problem is that vital elements of the bookwere left out: a confrontation between the master and a strayinglegendary wizard (the master loses and therefore the apprentices learnthat he can be beaten) and a magical journey to the magnificent Saxoncapital Dresden, which certainly should have been included into thefilm. Also, in the book it takes three years (which are actually nineyears outside the mill) until the final showdown; in the film one yearhas been omitted and, knowing the book, I felt rather disappointed andbetrayed about that. It might not be that bad if you don't know thebook. Like other commentators, I recommend not to watch the movie incase you have read the novel; if you haven't you might watch it and getentertained a little but not too much.

  10. Ralf-31 from Germany
    30 Mar 2012, 9:58 pm

    If you never have read the book and never intend to read it in thefuture, go on and watch the movie (6/10). It is a nice fantasy moviewith well done CGI, nice acting, a beautiful environment and anabove-average fantasy story.

    If you have read the book like me about 10 times or more and reallylove it, don't expect too much (or better: don't expect anything atall). The story is totally different from the original book. This mayexplain that the movie is voted 1/10 from people around 40 or more(like me) and much better from people who most probably never read thebook before and thus expect nothing.

    Most of the differences between movie and book are not really necessaryand change the setting (in my opinion much to the worse):

    – The magic in the book works with rituals for classic magical effects.(Changing weather, creating illusions, transform into animals, …) Inthe movie the magic is more like "jedi-school for the middle ages" (TM)(wooden sticks instead of lightsabers). That the devil is looking likeemperor palpatine (after part III) doesn't make it really better.

    – The mill in the book is not totally cut off the world like in themovie. In the book the story is set near Dresden, which Krabat visitsone time with his master and also he visits some nearby villages forfestivities. (This part might have been changed to cut costs.) I alsodon't understand why in the movie the mill is located in the hillswhile the nearby graveyard is set in the high mountains.

    – The whole surrounding is the average run of the mill fantasy medievalstyle. Lots of mud everywhere, dirty faces, not an orderly kitchen,only very rough houses. The book never suggested such an environment.

    – In the book the master tries to make Krabat his successor but Krabatrejects. Krabat is somewhere between admiration, distance and silentrejection. In the movie Krabat rejects the master always openly like astubborn schoolboy.

    – The movie is set in 1647 instead of around 1720. This makes itimpossible for the master to tell some stories from his youth probablyaround 170x. OK, the stories are missing anyway in the movie.

    Also some explanations given in the book would have been helpful andwould not cost so much minutes:

    – In the book all work done at day is effortless and work in the nightis like normal work. This explanation is missing in the movie.Sometimes the boys are sweating and sometimes they are happy.

    – The book explains why only a few "Gesellen" try to confront themaster: If the master dies by any mundane reasons, the "Gesellen" arefree AND keep their magical powers. If the master dies at theconfrontation, all will lose their power forever.

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