Politics

Paulo César Saraceni – O Desafio AKA The Dare (1966)

Passively facing the repression imposed by military dictatorship in Brazil in the 60s, a journalist gets into a personal crisis, aggravated by his love affair with an industrialist’s wife, who doesn’t want to leave her home because of her son. Read More »

István Szabó – Taking Sides (2001)

Plot
A tale based on the life of Wilhelm Furtwangler, the controversial conductor of the Berlin Philharmonic whose tenure coincided with the controversial Nazi era. One of the most spectacular and renowned conductors of the 30s, Furtwangler’s reputation rivaled that of Toscanini’s. After the war, he was investigated as part of the Allies’ de-Nazification programme. In the bombed-out Berlin of the immediate post-war period, the Allies slowly bring law and order–and justice–to bear on an occupied Germany. An American major is given the Furtwangler file, and is told to find everything he can and to prosecute the man ruthlessly. Tough and hard-nosed, Major Steve Arnold sets out to investigate a world of which he knows nothing. Orchestra members vouch for Furtwangler’s morality–he did what he could to protect Jewish players from his orchestra. To the Germans, deeply respectful of their musical heritage, Furtwangler was a demigod; to Major Arnold, he is just a lying, weak-willed Nazi. Read More »

Robert Guédiguian – Mon père est ingénieur AKA My Father Is an Engineer (2004)

“…It began with the a couple much like Joseph and Mary, only in a modern French setting. This fable continued for a little longer, until it became revealed that it was a story being read to a near-catatonic woman by an older lady. The younger of the women turns out to be Natasha, a pediatrician amongst the poor in Marseilles, and a political activist. She is the central character, and the rest of the film delves into her story, through flashbacks, and the contradiction that she represents. Read More »

Zivojin Pavlovic & Dinko Tucakovic – Drzava mrtvih AKA The State of the Dead (2002)

Quote:
When the war in Yugoslavia breaks out, an army officer who’s ethnic Slovenian yet still believes in Yugoslavia, decides to move to Belgrade. The country continues to fall apart and so does his family failing to find acceptance there. Read More »

Veit Harlan – Jud Süß AKA Jew Seuss (1940)

In this notorious Nazi propaganda historical costume melodrama, a conniving, ambitious Jewish businessman, Süß Oppenheimer, snares a post as treasurer to the Duke of Wurttemburg by showering the corrupt duke with treasure and promises of even greater riches. As the Jew’s schemes grow more elaborate and his actions more brazen, the dukedom nearly erupts into civil war. Persuaded by the Jew, the Duke all but scuttles the constitution and alienates the assembly by lifting the local ban on Jews in Stuttgart. In a final outrage, the Jew rapes a wholesome German girl and tortures her father and fiancée. When the Duke succumbs to a sudden heart attack, the assembly of Elders try the Jew and sentence him to death for having “carnal knowledge of a Christian woman”. Read More »

Fritz Hippler – Der ewige Jude AKA The Eternal Jew (1940)

Under the guise of a brutally honest documentary, this malevolent propaganda film aims to be an “indispensable tool in the hands of the Aryan race”, designed to depict the “true” Jew when the masks of western civilisation fall off. Read More »

Robert Kramer & Philip J. Spinelli – Scenes from the Class Struggle in Portugal (1977)

Quote:
Combining newsreel footage, still photographs, interviews, and analytical narration, this documentary focuses on the antifascist, anti-imperialist efforts of labor groups, peasants, and working-class soldiers to liberate Portugal from the control of the government of Antonio de Oliveira Salazar. Read More »