Fifty years ago today, East German construction crews were in the last stages of preparation for building the Berlin Wall. On August 13, they began, instantly giving an incredible propaganda tool to the free world.
The Wall has been down for 22 years and will soon be a faint memory only for geezers. But it provided plenty of iconic moments in its history, from concerts to speeches to movies.
Here are five:
5. The Spy Who Came In From The ColdThe bitter end(ing)
John le Carré's The Spy Who Came In From The Cold is a masterpiece of the Cold War, a dark and cynical look at the reality of espionage that was the polar opposite of the James Bond world. The movie is a solid adaptation, with Richard Burton giving one of his best performances. The ending, which involves the Wall, is classic.
4. The Wall In ConcertEven it couldn't bring a Pink Floyd reunion
When the Wall came down in 1989, there was only one thing to do: The Wall. The massive concert (over a quarter-million attendees) wasn't quite as star-studded as initially planned, but was still a cathartic event for the rockers of Germany. It will likely be the only time the Scorpions and Joni Mitchell share a bill, but never say never. One of the highlights was Van Morrison's "Comfortably Numb," with The Band's Rick Danko, Levon Helm and Garth Hudson singing back-up.