Das magische Band – West Germany 1959, 21 min.
Directed by: Ferdinand Khittl
Written by: Bodo Blüthner, Ferdinand Khittl, Ernst von Khuon
Cinematography by: Ronald Martini
Music by: Oskar Sala
Edited by: Irmgard Henrici
Cast: Margot Trooger, Ferdinand Khittl
Produced by: Gesellschaft für bildende Filme, München
One of the 3 short films that came as an extra on Edition Filmmuseum 47: Die Parallelstrasse AKA The Parallel Street (Ferdinand Khittl, 1962).
An innovative documentary on magnetic tape & sound recording, sort of in the style of Charles and Ray Eames. Continue reading Ferdinand Khittl – Das magische Band AKA The Magic Tape (1959)
Another mammoth-project with the “chronologist of our time” Alexander Kluge. With 12 hours film, Gelpke and Kluge try to get a better understanding of the new human, which arouse from the internet, artificial intelligence…. Like his last projects, this films are complilations of many fragments, shorts, fiction-interviews, opera, theatre etc. Continue reading Alexander Kluge, Basil Gelpke – Mensch 2.0 (2011)
When she was a little girl, Liuba came to town with her widowed mother to live in the block of flats owned by her aunt Anna Iwanowna. The wealthy and cold-hearted Anna Iwanowna barely accepted them as tenants. And no sooner did Liuba’s mother die than she wanted to send her niece to the orphanage. Fortunately, Pawlin, Anna Iwanowna’s janitor, decided to adopt her and he brought her up with affection. When she grew up, the beautiful Liuba fell in love with her aunt’s son, Dodja, a good-looking but profligate army officer. Wishing nothing more than an affair with Liuba, Dodja did not hesitate to play the comedy of love to her. When she realized what Dodja was really after, Liuba was devastated and in desperation accepted to marry Pawlin, her benefactor, who had been infatuated with her for years. Alas, in the middle of the wedding party Dodja danced with Liuba and eloped with her. Written by Guy Bellinger Continue reading Kurt Meisel – Tragödie einer Leidenschaft (1949)
By the director of Cabinet of Dr.Caligari, this is the Passion embedded in a contemporary story. An anarchist jailed for an attempted assassination is told the Passion story by the prison chaplain, who seeks to convince him that it is better to sacrifice ones own life than take the life of ones enemy. The framing story, taken from a novel, is believed to have been intended to give the Biblical story an anti-Bolshevist propaganda function. In any case, it was added without the knowledge of the actors in the Passion story, who included some of the major stars of the period Asta Nielsen as Mary Magdalene, Henny Porten as Mary, Grigori Chmara as Jesus, and Werner Krauss as Pontius Pilate -bampfa.berkeley.edu Continue reading Robert Wiene – I.N.R.I. AKA Crown of Thorns (1923)
A peasant father sends his seven sons to fetch water for their sickly young sister but when he curses them for not returning soon enough, they turn into ravens and disappear. Many years later when the sister is grown up, she sets out in search of her brothers but that will be a long and dangerous journey.
This very gothic horror fantasy animation from the Third Reich is a masterpiece. It is based on one of the German fairytales by Grimm brothers and about 120 puppets were used during the production. Continue reading Ferdinand Diehl – Die Sieben Raben AKA The Seven Ravens (1937)
Propaganda film detailing the plight of ethnic Germans, known as “Volga Germans”, in the Soviet province of Manchuria. Continue reading Gustav Ucicky – Flüchtlinge AKA Refugees (1933)
Two women spend a weekend together at the North Sea. Walks on the beach, fish buns at a snack stand, mobile weather forecasts. Sky, horizon, water. One of them will soon return to her family in Argentina while the other one will try to come a step closer to the ocean. She travels to the Caribbean and the foreign makes her vulnerable. Then, the land is out of sight. On a sailing vessel she crosses the Atlantic Ocean. One wave follows the other, they never resemble. Thoughts go astray, time leaves the beaten track and the swell lulls to deep sleep. The sea takes over the narration. And when the other one reappears in it, the wind is still in her hair while the ground beneath her feet is solid. She returns and the one of them could ask: “Have you changed?” Continue reading Helena Wittmann – Drift (2017)