Colonel Redl - description
Colonel Redl (German: Oberst Redl (original title); Hungarian: Redl ezredes ) is a 1985 drama film by Hungarian director István Szabó. It tells the life story of an Austrian Imperial military officer Alfred Redl (played by Klaus Maria Brandauer) who was blackmailed into espionage for the Russian secret service to prevent the revelation of his homosexuality. The screenplay is adapted from British playwright John Osborne's play A Patriot for Me.
Set in the Austro-Hungarian empire in the period before World War I, the film charts the rise of Colonel Redl from a boy at military school, right up to his betrayal, compromise and suicide.
The film also charts the rise of inter-ethnic tensions in Austro-Hungary, which were to bring about the assassination in Sarajevo - Redl is himself a Ruthenian, one of the minor Slavic groups, and ends up suffering because of that.
Redl himself goes from being a fanatical supporter of the Habsburg monarchy, to a pathetic victim, but by that time it is too late for him.