Third Reich Cinema

Veit Harlan – Verwehte Spuren AKA Covered Tracks (1938)

Séraphine and her mother arrive in Paris to visit the 1867 World Exhibition. In an overcrowded city they must be accommodated in separate hotels. During the night the mother, who wasn’t feeling very well, gets suddenly worse. When next morning Séraphine goes to meet her every trace of her presence has disappeared and everybody denies having ever met her. The bewildered young woman must find someone who believes her. Read More »

Douglas Sirk – Das Hofkonzert AKA The Court Concert (1936)

From All Move Guide:
Before he became cult director Douglas Sirk, Detlef Sierck cut his teeth on such lavish European star vehicles as Hofkonzert (Court Concert). Marta Eggerth is cast as Christine, a young singer who aspires to find out who her father was. Her odyssey brings her to the court of a mythical kingdom, where she is romanced by handsome lieutenant Walter (Johannes Heesters). He is warned not to lose his heart to a “commoner,” but all turns out all right when King Serenissimus (Otto Tressler) turns out to be Christine’s long-lost daddy. Hofkonzert was designed as a comeback for Marta Eggerth, whose star had eclipsed by the mid-1930s. ~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide Read More »

Helmut Käutner – Wir machen Musik (1942)

Quote:
Karl Zimmermann plays piano at the Café Rigoletto because he needs the money, but actually his whole passion is classical music, and work on his own opera is in progress. Then he meets the pop singer and song writer Anni Pichler, whom he wants to convert to “serious” music, but even the private lessons at his bachelor pad cannot convince her. Despite everything, the two find each other appealing, and they marry after a short time.
Professionally now everyone goes his/her own way, but at home things don’t go well. Money’s always scarce, and Anni complains he could earn more if he’d write music people like. And when Karl’s opera bombs, he hits rock bottom and they break up. Read More »

Helmut Käutner – Unter den Brücken AKA Under the Bridges (1946) (HD)

Two barge skippers fall in love with the same woman.

“Under the Bridges”, made in the last year of the Third Reich, proves that artistic genius can flourish even under the most difficult circumstances. The film completely transcends its time and presents a simple love story, the themes of which are universal. Through both his settings and his actors, Kautner achieves a naturalism which has seldom been equaled. That he managed to do this in 1944-45 Germany is almost unbelievable. A fortunate and unexpected treasure from a most unfortunate time. Read More »

Veit Harlan – Opfergang AKA The Great Sacrifice (1944)

Quote:
Albrecht Froben, though married to Octavia, falls in love with his neighbor, Äls Flodéen. She, however, is slowly dying from a debilitating disease. During an epidemic, Albrecht goes to bring her daughter to safety but he catches typhoid and is quarantined in hospital. Octavia, realising the love match, and hearing that Als is now bedridden and dying, dresses up as him and rides by her gates every day to keep her spirits up – her bed is next to the window. Albrecht returns. Äls has a dream in which she talks to her projection of Albrecht and concludes that she does not wish to take part in this union and accepts death. Albrecht is reconciled with his wife. Read More »

Reinhold Schünzel & Albert Valentin – Les Dieux s’amusent AKA Amphitryon (1935)

Synopsis
Jupiter comes down from Mount Olympus and disguises himself as a mortal to romance a woman… Read More »

Hans H. Zerlett – Zwei Frauen (1938)



Here’s a film so rare and forgotten, it isn’t even listed the German Lexikon des Internationalen Films, so it’s unlikely that it ran anywhere after the war. The overly bright but quite good copy of unknown provenience has Dutch and French subtitles burned in.
The story is about a theater star (Olga Tschechowa) who finds herself suddenly a mother again after her daughter (Irene von Meyendorff) who lived with her father for 16 years got thrown out by him because she wants also to become an actress. Naturally the mother isn’t too pleased because she fears to be recognized as a mother losing some star appeal, so they present themselves as aunt and niece. However the young girl soon proves to be a competitor in love and career … Read More »