When and Where Does Blood and Gold Take Place?

Netflix’s ‘Blood and Gold’ is a German action-drama film. The plot mainly revolves around a German deserter, Heinrich (Robert Maaser), and a young farmer, Elsa (Marie Hacke). They meet when Elsa saves Heinrich’s life after the SS soldiers hang him from a tree and leave him to die a slow death. When these same SS soldiers come to Elsa’s farm to steal provisions and attempt to rape Elsa, Heinrich returns the favor by saving her and her brother, Paule. It turns out that the SS is in the region in search of a cache of gold that originally belonged to a Jewish family. If you are wondering about the setting of ‘Blood and Gold,’ we got you covered. SPOILERS AHEAD.

Spring 1945: The War’s Final Chapters

‘Blood and Gold’ takes place in the spring of 1945. World War II is nearing its end, and most of the German population knows that their country is set to lose the war. Through the radio announcements, the audience is informed about what is happening in the outside world. As the SS operatives under the command of lieutenant colonel von Starnfeld desperately search for the gold belonging to the Löwenstein family, the outskirts of Berlin become the frontline of the war. Eventually, the city falls, and Hitler commits suicide. By the time Heinrich finds his daughter in Hagen, the war in Europe is pretty much over. There is a flashback scene involving the Löwenstein family, set during Kristallnacht, or the Night of the Broken Glass, which took place on November 9-10, 1938.

Despite the narrative and setting of ‘Blood and Gold,’ Peter Thorwarth, the director, asserted in an interview with TV Movie that it isn’t a war film, preferring to call it “a spaghetti western in the classic sense.” According to him, ‘Blood and Gold’ is a type of film he, scriptwriter Stefan Barth, and producer Christian Becker grew up with. “There’s a certain responsibility in that, of course, but I didn’t see it as a burden,” he explained. “I make all my films the way I think is right. That might sound a bit lofty, but when I’m on the set I can’t presume what might please whom and why. I have to rely on my intuition. Only when I’m 100 percent convinced of something can I project my genuine enthusiasm onto the team and ultimately onto the screen or screen.”

Sonnenberg: A Village Divided

‘Blood and Gold’ is predominantly set in a village named Sonnenberg. In the real world, there is a Sonnenberg municipality in the north of Oberhavel district in the German state of Brandenburg. The film’s Sonnenberg is likely a dramatized version of this municipality. ‘Blood and Gold’ depicts how easily indoctrinated people of small settlements like Sonnenberg became, harboring anti-Semite sentiments and attacking their Jewish neighbors, even though their families have lived side by side for generations.

However, their indoctrination fails to triumph over their greed and opportunism. Some characters in ‘Blood and Gold’ steal the gold belonging to the Löwenstein family and refuse to hand it over when the SS arrives in their village looking for the same gold. The villagers even resort to killing each other. When it becomes apparent that their side will suffer defeat, they prepare to welcome the Allied forces with open arms.

The film’s ending is set in Hagen, an independent city in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. This is where Heinrich finally reunites with his daughter. Interestingly, ‘Blood and Gold’ was predominantly filmed in Prague, Czech Republic.

Read More: Was Löwenstein’s Gold Real in Germany?