Das boob! Outrage as TV chiefs sex up sequel to classic film Das Boot about an all-male crew on a Nazi submarine
- Sky Atlantic will show a sequel to the 1981 epic German war movie Das Boot
- Wolfgang Petersen’s movie followed the fate of a single German U-Boat
- The new series, which starts this week, features a number of female characters
- Some early reviews have commented on the racy nature of the scenes
Chris Hastings for The Mail on Sunday
It is widely regarded as one of the greatest war films ever made, a tense drama almost entirely confined to the claustrophobic all-male setting of a Nazi submarine.
But although the men of the original Das Boot languished in mid-ocean far from female company, a new sequel features a string of women characters – and often in explicit sex scenes.
The television series of the same name carries on in 1942 from where the film left off.
Jurgen Prochnow, pictured, starred in the original German version of the movie from 1981
Unlike the original, the modern production, pictured, features much female nudity
Much of the action is set on board a German U-boat but there are parallel storylines involving women in the Nazi forces and in the French Resistance.
German actress Vicky Krieps plays Simone Strasser, a German naval translator assigned to the submarine base at La Rochelle in occupied France.
In one scene in the opening episode, Strasser returns to the house where she has been newly billeted and finds the French owner Margot (Fleur Geffrier) bathing topless in the kitchen. The women barely know each other but are unfazed by the encounter. Margot carries on bathing and simply asks Strasser for coffee or cigarettes.
There is also an explicit scene set in a French brothel. A Nazi sailor tells his 17-year-old comrade: ‘It’s bad luck to have a virgin on board.’
Another of the sailors is shown frantically making love to a prostitute, who is less than impressed by his efforts. The young virgin is later shown to a bedroom where a prostitute removes her top in front of him. But perhaps the biggest taboo-buster comes as Strasser visits her brother, a radio operator on his submarine in dock before its maiden voyage – despite the superstition that women should never go aboard. The outraged captain of the vessel is moved to warn him that allowing his sister on the boat will bring bad luck.
While the eight-part drama has already been a hit in Germany, film historian Kevin Brownlow suggested the changes from the original 1981 film were cynically motivated, saying: ‘I suppose they hope they will get the original audience back plus a new one and then profits will roll in.’
He added: ‘The original film had a terrifically authentic bite to it. It was brilliantly shot. It was the Germans being pretty honest with themselves. There was no cover-up for the atrocities that the U-boat people committed.’
In an interview last year, series producer Moritz Polter explained how the story had been opened up beyond the submarine because audiences wanted ‘characters’ as well as ‘claustrophobia’.
Citing the tension and masculinity of the original Das Boot, he said: ‘Audiences that don’t know the film, they get more than that, which is the second strand we have created on land in La Rochelle.’
A second series of the drama is already in production.
- Das Boot starts on Sky Atlantic on Wednesday at 9pm.