Later articles

Ich war acht und wollte leben 03 Nov 2008

NEW BOOK HEINRICH SCHÖNKER: ICH WAR ACHT UND WOLLTE LEBEN

This book tells the childhood story of the Polish Jew Henryk Schönker who grew up in Kraków and Oświęcim and was eight years old when the Germans attacked Poland. His surviving the war and now being an elderly gentleman living in Tel Aviv, is almost a miracle. Schönker's book does not only make accessible the incredible dimension of the Nazis' crimes on a very personal level, it also covers some little known facts about the history of the Upper Silesian Jews during German occupation. What's that got to do with film history? Well, almost nothing. But there actually is a small connection, both frightening and touching. Find out about it!

Dieses Buch erzählt die Geschichte der Kindheit des polnischen Juden Henryk Schönker, der in Krakau und Auschwitz aufgewachsen ist und beim Überfall der Deutschen auf Polen acht Jahre alt war. Dass er den Krieg überlebt hat und heute ein alter Herr ist, der in Tel Aviv wohnt, ist beinahe ein Wunder. Sein Buch erschließt uns nicht nur die unglaubliche Dimension der Verbrechen der Nationalsozialisten auf sehr persönliche Weise, es enthält auch einige wenig bekannte Fakten über die Geschichte der oberschlesischen Juden während der deutschen Besatzung. Was das ganze mit Filmgeschichte zu tun hat? Nun, fast nichts. Doch eine kleine, erschreckende und bewegende, Verbindung gibt es doch. Lesen Sie selbst! ... more

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04 Jul 2008

UPDATE NEW METROPOLIS FOOTAGE


Breakfast with METROPOLIS: The new ZEIT is on newsstands THIS WEEK. 02 Jul 2008

NEWS MISSING METROPOLIS FOOTAGE DISCOVERED IN BUENOS AIRES

Can the reconstruction of Fritz Lang's 1927 science fiction film METROPOLIS finally be completed? Now staff members of the small Museo del Cine "Pablo C. Ducros Hicken" in Buenos Aires discovered footage previously missing from all available versions of the film in a 16 mm negative originated from private property.

The missing pieces were presented to a small circle of experts in Berlin last Tuesday. Helmut Poßmann, chairman of the F. W. Murnau Stiftung that presented the last METROPOLIS reconstruction in 2001, said they would now like to produce a complete reconstruction together with their partners and the Buenos Aires film museum.

Though the new scenes show poor image quality, the Berlin experts consider them key elements to the film's understanding. They include:

The German weekly paper DIE ZEIT will present an exclusive story about the new discovery in tomorrow's edition (look out for their supplement ZEITmagazin). Pictures can be watched online:

DIE ZEIT article
Picture Gallery
Pressemitteilung der Murnau-Stiftung

Our earlier stories about METROPOLIS:

METROPOLIS film page
METROPOLIS DVD review
METROPOLIS study edition DVD review


The Hands of Orlac DVD 22 Apr 2008

NEW DVD THE HANDS OF ORLAC

Now out on DVD is the 1924 Austrian silent film ORLACS HÄNDE, reuniting the director and star of DAS CABINET DES DR. CALIGARI, Robert Wiene and Conrad Veidt. Based on the 1995 restoration arranged by the Deutsches Filminstitut, this release not only relies on the best possible material, it's even adding footage from a newly found print held by the Raymond Rohauer Collection.

Es ist eine bekannte Tatsache, dass man, um wichtige deutsche Stummfilme auf DVD zu bekommen, oft im Ausland danach suchen muss, etwa bei Eureka Video in England ( ASPHALT) oder Divisa Home Video in Spanien ( FRAU IM MOND). Kino International hat jetzt in den USA den österreichischen Film ORLACS HÄNDE herausgebracht, der den Regisseur (Robert Wiene) und den Hauptdarsteller (Conrad Veidt) des CABINETS DES DR. CALIGARI wieder zusammenbrachte. ... more

Order at amazon.com


Star Wars - Anatomie einer Saga 14 Jan 2008

NEW BOOK STAR WARS - ANATOMIE EINER SAGA

A book about George Lucas' STAR WARS films, but without ramblings about the film's production or gossip about their stars. Jullier's study is an exemplary film analysis, anatomising the six films in detail and showing what they really are: a post-modern text, characteristic of which is not the explosions and special effects but the narrative.

In Barry Salts 1983 erschienenen Buch Film Style and Technology findet sich die Bemerkung, in der Filmliteratur gebe es oft Behauptungen wie: "Fritz Lang verwendete in seinen Filmen hauptsächlich Totalen", die zwar weitgehend geglaubt, aber nie wirklich geprüft werden -- und sich bei näherem Hinsehen dann als falsch herausstellen (wie das für die Aussage über Fritz Lang tatsächlich der Fall ist). Salt plädierte dafür, bevor man solche Aussagen tätigt und auf ihrer Grundlage womöglich zu weit reichenden Schlussfolgerungen gelangt, zunächst doch einmal das Forschungsobjekt genau zu untersuchen. Das ist die Aufgabe der Filmanalyse: das Beschreiben, Zerlegen und Vermessen der untersuchten Filme, um erst davon ausgehend Aussagen darüber zu treffen, was an diesen Filmen besonders und was gewöhnlich ist, welche Bedeutung sie haben könnten, warum sie erfolgreich waren und ob sie eventuell Ideologien transportieren. ... more

Hier bestellen


Nosferatu DVD 14 Jan 2008

NEW DVD NOSFERATU (1922)

Yet another reconstruction of NOSFERATU is now out on DVD, in German and English versions. Careful digital restoration makes this a production superior to previous releases. Also, the original score by Hans Erdmann, long time considered lost, has been found and recorded by the Radio Symphony Orchestra Saarbrücken, conducted by Berndt Heller.

Filmrestaurierung ist ein nie endender Prozess. Und so liegt von dem wohlbekannten NOSFERATU jetzt eine weitere Rekonstruktion vor, angefertigt 2005/06 von Luciano Berriatúa für die Friedrich-Wilhelm-Murnau-Stiftung in Zusammenarbeit mit dem Bundesarchiv-Filmarchiv und der Cinémathèque Française. Das Schöne ist: Damit ist der Film jetzt auch in einer "definitiven" Fassung auf dem deutschen Markt erhältlich, denn bisher war NOSFERATU, wie viele andere deutsche Stummfilmklassiker auch, nur aus dem Ausland zu beziehen. ... more

Hier bestellen


CineFest 2007 DVD 28 Nov 2007

NEWS GOLEM (1915) FRAGMENT FOUND

Heinrich (Henrik) Galeen's and Paul Wegener's original 1915 GOLEM is one of the most famous films considered lost. Now, a new fragment has surfaced in the holding of a private film collector in Uelzen, Germany. It is a short coloured 77 m piece showing some of the final scenes with Wegener in full Golem costume (and a dagger in his chest), Galeen, Lyda Salmonova and Carl Ebert.

The fragment was restored by the Bundesarchiv-Filmarchiv and, surprisingly, presented at the Opening Gala of the CineFest 2007. The restored piece also contains part of the as yet only known fragment of the film (the "bellow scene" with Wegener and Galeen) and has a length of 97 m. Additional 11 m are being restored later this year. And the best part is: the restored 4 mins piece shown at the CineFest can be found in the extras section of the CineFest DVD which also contains the complete 1930 Anny Ondra film DIE VOM RUMMELPLATZ and many more short films and extras. The DVD "Film im Herzen Europas" (Film in the Heart of Europe) can be ordered here.

The CineFest programme is now moving to Berlin ( Zeughauskino, Nov 30 - Dec 23).

Hier bestellen


DVD Cover (The Call of Cthulhu) 30 Oct 2007

NEW DVD THE CALL OF CTHULHU

Imagine you are on a travel with your car. It begins to darken and you decide to stay in the next village before you get tired. You find a little hotel but you're not tired enough to go to bed right away. So you decide to go to a local cinema and watch the evening performance. There's only one theatre with one film that night. And it's raining so you can hardly read the exterior lettering, but you buy a ticket anyway. And then the film begins with symphonic orchestral music, in black-and-white, and the title cards read: HPLHS Motion Pictures presents THE CALL OF CTHULHU. Wait a moment -- that's the famous horror short story of H.P. Lovecraft -- you never knew that it had been adapted for the big screen!

The film begins, and you're baffled more and more: It's a silent film! And indeed a faithful adaptation of Lovecraft's frightening tale which told the story of a man who in his late great-uncle's papers finds hints about the existence of an ancient monster called the mighty Cthulhu which is of such unspeakable horror that the knowledge of it is driving people insane. But "Cthulhu" was, as you recall, written in 1926 and first published in the American horror pulp magazine Weird Tales in February 1928. That was at the end of the silent film period, Lovecraft wasn't even famous then, and later the story has been repeatedly considered "unfilmable". Your mind snaps. How can there be a silent film based on the story? But there it is, right before your eyes! Cut fast, with imaginative imagery, and an expressionist mood. Have you by chance discovered a forgotten treasure of silent film history? ... more


Fredy Bockbein trifft Mister Dynamit 30 Oct 2007

NEW BOOK FREDY BOCKBEIN TRIFFT MISTER DYNAMIT

Happy Birthday! Hans-Michael Bock, film historian and founder of CineGraph, turned 60 this year. On this occasion, Christoph Fuchs and Michael Töteberg assembled friends, companions and colleagues. They contributed to a festschrift about films "beyond the canon" which was published by text + kritik and presented to Hans-Michael in July. The fastest book production I ever witnessed! And a remarkable collection of texts you wouldn't normally find in film history books.

Table of contents:
...

Filme
Leonardo Quaresima über DER LETZTE TAG (1913)
Klaus Kreimeier über DER GEHEIMNISVOLLE KLUB (1913)
Michael Wedel über FURCHT (1917)
Robert Wohlleben über SEEFAHRT IST NOT! (1921)
Horst Claus über KLEIDER MACHEN LEUTE (1921)
Jan-Christopher Horak über JEREMIAS (1922)
Günter Krenn über DIE STADT OHNE JUDEN (1924)
Thomas Brandlmeier über VARIETÉ (1925)
Olaf Brill über IRRGARTEN DER LEIDENSCHAFT / THE PLEASURE GARDEN (1925)
Rainer Rother über IHRE MAJESTÄT DIE LIEBE (1930)
Joseph Garncarz über SPUK UM MITTERNACHT / THE LAUREL AND HARDY MURDER CASE (1931)
Christoph Fuchs über UNSICHTBARE GEGNER (1933)
David Kleingers über PETER (1934)
Frank Stern über BRETTER, DIE DIE WELT BEDEUTEN (1934/35)
Francesco Bono über ALLOTRIA (1936)
Johannes Roschlau über EIN MÄDCHEN GEHT AN LAND (1938)
Friedemann Beyer über REISE IN DIE VERGANGENHEIT (1942/43) ... mehr


Max Schreck as Nosferatu 19 Sep 2007

NEWS NOSFERATU, SPIDERS, HAMLET

The Filmfest Hamburg opens next week, featuring a special screening of NOSFERATU (1922) with music by French DJ Raphaël Marionneau and introductory talk by film historian Olaf Brill.

Earlier this year, a newly restored version of THE SPIDERS (1919/20) has been presented at the international film festival Karlovy Vary.

Also earlier this year, the newly restored version of HAMLET (1921) premiered at the Berlin film festival and has been shown on Arte TV. A DVD release is upcoming.


21 Aug 2007

SITE NEWS PROVIDER CHANGE

Dear friends,

due to a provider change, my filmhistoriker e-mail addresses were temporarily unavailable.

If your mails were sent back, please try again, everything should work out fine now.
Also, look out for new contents, hopefully, later this year.

Best wishes,
Olaf.


Der die Tollkirsche ausgräbt. Foto: X Verleih, Berlin. 20 Feb 2006

NEW FILM SILENT FILM BY FRANKA POTENTE

Worlds collide in Franka Potente's directoral debut DER DIE TOLLKIRSCHE AUSGRÄBT (DIGGING FOR BELLADONNA), premiered at the Berlin film festival last week. Her "long short film" is a game with time, and film history: a silent film shot in the 21st century.


Der Film spielt im Jahr 1918: Der Krieg ist zuende, der Kaiser ins Exil geflohen. Er spielt aber auch in einer magischen Märchenwelt: in der Flüche wirken und Wünsche in Erfüllung gehen. Und er spielt in der Welt des Films: Nicht zur Entstehungszeit passend, sondern zur Handlungszeit, präsentiert Potente ihr Regiedebüt schwarzweiß und stumm, mit Zwischentiteln, Irisblenden und blassgeschminkten Schauspielern, die stets in Richtung Kamera agieren. Franka Potente hat einen Stummfilm gedreht, im Mai 2005! ... mehr


METROPOLIS DVD Study Edition 20 Feb 2006

NEW DVD METROPOLIS DVD STUDY EDITION

Here comes the METROPOLIS Study Edition! This new edition allows for an in-depth analysis of the film, including its missing pieces. They become tangible through a thorough examination of source material such as the original score, or the script. Also, for the first time Huppertz' score is presented in full length. And, through appendices and archives, a wealth of source material is made available, a lot of which never published before, including photos, outlines, drawings, and a pdf facsimile of Thea von Harbou's original script.


Die METROPOLIS-Studienfassung ist da! Lange erträumt, ermöglicht diese neue DVD nun präzises Studium des Films und insbesondere auch der Inhalte seiner Fehlstellen auf der Höhe der aktuellen Forschung. ... mehr


CineFest 2005 FilmEuropa Babylon 13 Nov 2005

REPORT CINEFEST 2005 OPENED

Opened yesterday, this year's CineFest -- International Festival of German Film Heritage presents an 8½ day programme of screenings, lectures, discussions and workshops around this year's topic FilmEuropa -- Babylon -- Multilingual Versions (MLV) of the 1930s in Europe. Opening film was Douglas Sirk's sparkling comedy APRIL, APRIL! starring Albrecht Schoenhals and recently deceased Carola Höhn. Also, during yesterday's festive opening the winners of the Willy Haas Award and the Reinhold Schünzel Award were presented.


Gestern wurde es eröffnet: das diesjährige CineFest -- Internationales Festival des deutschen Film-Erbes. Zahlreiche Veranstaltungen an 8½ Tagen drehen sich rund um das Thema FilmEuropa -- Babylon -- Mehrsprachenversionen der 1930er Jahre in Europa. Eröffnungsfilm war Detlef Sierck's spritziges Lustspiel APRIL, APRIL! mit Albrecht Schoenhals und der kürzlich verstorbenen Carola Höhn. Außerdem wurden bei der gestrigen festlichen Eröffnungsveranstaltung die Gewinner des Willy-Haas-Preises und des Reinhold-Schünzel-Preises verkündet. ... mehr


Giesen, Hobsch: Hitlerjunge Quex, Jud Süß und Kolberg 13 Nov 2005

NEW BOOK HITLERJUNGE QUEX, JUD SÜSS UND KOLBERG

Giesen's and Hobsch's big book about Nazi propaganda films is a missed opportunity. Neither does it present a coherent portrayal of NS cinema nor does it work as a reference book. Though it's featuring a lot of contemporary texts (e.g., from the NS film press), it fails to comment on them properly, and it even lacks such essentials as a film title and name index.


Der deutsche Film der Zeit von 1933-45 ist geprägt durch die totale staatliche Kontrolle und Gleichschaltung durch das NS-Regime. Goebbels und Konsorten machten die gesamte deutsche Filmproduktion, -distribution und -kritik zu Instrumenten faschistischer Propaganda. Ideologisch unliebsame oder jüdische Künstler -- die Protagonisten des Films der Weimarer Republik -- wurden mit Berufsverbot belegt, aus Deutschland vertrieben oder ermordet. Und alle deutschen Filme wurden dem Zweck unterworfen, die NS-Weltanschauung zu vermitteln und das Regime zu stabilisieren, nicht nur die im engeren Sinne als Propagandafilme zu identifizierenden Werke, die offensiv antisemitische Hetze, Geschichtsrevisionismus, Kriegsverherrlichung oder Führerkult betrieben. ... more

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Last update (this page): 05 Oct 2009.

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