Till Kleinert – Der Samurai (2014)

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A wolf strives through the woods around an isolated German village. Jakob the young local police officer is onto him, but scents something more in the darkness. What he finds is a man, it seems, wild eyed, of wiry build, in a dress. He carries a katana, a Samurai sword. When the Samurai invites Jakob to follow him on his crusade towards the village, it becomes Jakob’s mission to pursue the lunatic to end this wanton destruction. At the end of the night Jakob has experienced too much, is too far from whom he once was. Something hidden has been unleashed to meet the first rays of daylight. – imdb.com

Berlin International Film Festival 2014: DIALOGUE en Perspective (Nominated – Till Kleinert) Continue reading

Rainer Werner Fassbinder – Mutter Kusters’ Fahrt zum Himmel aka Mother Kusters Goes To Heaven (1975)

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Mother Küsters’ Trip to Heaven (German: Mutter Küsters’ Fahrt zum Himmel) is a 1975 German film written and directed by Rainer Werner Fassbinder. It stars Brigitte Mira, Ingrid Caven, Karlheinz Böhm and Margit Carstensen. The film was shot over 20 days between February and March of 1975 in Frankfurt am Main.

Emma Küsters (Mira), a working-class woman lives in Frankfurt with her son and daughter-in-law. While she is doing outreach work assembling electric plugs, Frau Küsters learns that her husband Hermann (a tire-factory worker for twenty years) has killed his supervisor and then committed suicide. It later becomes apparent that Mr. Küsters had become temporarily insane after hearing layoff announcements. Continue reading

Ingmar Bergman – Aus dem Leben der Marionetten AKA From the Life of the Marionettes (1980)

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From “Wiki”

From the Life of the Marionettes (German: Aus dem Leben der Marionetten) is a 1980 film directed by Ingmar Bergman. The film was produced in West Germany with a German language screenplay and soundtrack while Bergman was in “tax exile” from his native Sweden. It is filmed in black and white apart from two colour sequences at the beginning and end of the movie. It is set in Munich. The title is a quotation excerpted from a passage in The Adventures of Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi:

“Most unfortunately in the lives of the Marionettes there is always a BUT that spoils everything”.

Unlike Collodi’s story, however, Bergman’s is unremittingly bleak in tone. Continue reading

Ferdinand Khittl – Das magische Band AKA The Magic Tape (1959)

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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

Werner Herzog – Auch Zwerge haben klein angefangen AKA Even Dwarfs Started Small (1970)

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Synopsis:

The inhabitants of an institution in a remote country rebel against their keepers. Their acts of rebellion are by turns humorous, boring and alarming. An allegory on the problematic nature of fully liberating the human spirit, as both commendable and disturbing elements of our nature come forward. The film shows how justifiable revolt may be empowering, but may also turn to chaos and depravity. The allegory is developed in part by the fact that the film is cast entirely with dwarfs. Continue reading

Nicolas Humbert – Step Across the Border (1990)

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from imdb,

“This film is a snapshot of the life of Fred Frith, an English-born multi-instrumentalist, composer, and improvisor. It finds him in Europe, Japan, and the US, working and playing with a variety of avant garde artists.

There is no narrative, or narrator. The images blend with his music, and visa versa, creating a narrative all their own. His performances, widely varied, reveal a light hearted intensity. In one scene, he uses his violin to ‘sing’ with seagulls and, in another, he conducts a quartet. Most of all, it shows him as a human being whose being is infused with music. It pours out of him in all its varied forms, and he welcomes it all. Continue reading

Leni Riefenstahl & Béla Balázs – Das blaue Licht AKA The Blue Light (1932)

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Synopsis
Junta is hated by the people in the village where she lives, especially by the women, who suspect her of being a witch. Only she can climb the nearby mountains to a cave high up, whence a mysterious blue light glows when the moon is full. Many young men of the village have died trying to follow her. She is driven out of town, and takes to living in the mountains. Eventually she shares the secret of the blue light with one man, and he betrays it. Continue reading