Douglas Sirk

Hans Schönherr & Douglas Sirk & Tilman Taube – Bourbon Street Blues (1979)

At the end of 1970, the Filmmuseum in the City Museum of Munich showed a small Sirk retrospective (six productions from All That Heaven Allows to Imitation of Life). Fassbinder watched all of the films in this showcase and was deeply moved: “That really breaks you up in the movie theater. You understand something about the world and what it is doing to you.” This cinematic experience must have been a revelation for him. He described his impressions vividly in an extensive essay, and came to the conclusion: “I have seen six films by Douglas Sirk. Among them are the finest films in the world.” The young filmmaker went to visit the Hollywood veteran, who was now living in the Swiss canton of Ticino. And when the almost eighty-year-old director was teaching at the Munich Academy of Television and Film (HFF/M), Fassbinder took on one of the parts in an academic production that Sirk was supervising. (He played in Bourbon Street Blues, the film adaptation of a one-act play by the well-known writer Tennessee Williams). Sirk’s work experienced a renaissance, not least of all thanks to Fassbinder’s essay, but the influence Sirk exerted on him has nevertheless been somewhat exaggerated. Read More »

Douglas Sirk and Hajo Gies – Sprich zu mir wie der Regen AKA Talk to Me Like the Rain (1976)

Encouraged by Fassbinder, with whom he became friendly after the then-enfant terrible of the German cinema visited him in Lugano, Sirk also did some teaching during the late 1970s at the film school in Munich, where he made three short films with his students. Sprich zu mir wie der Regen was the first of these films supervised by Sirk. Read More »

Douglas Sirk – Taza, Son of Cochise (1954)

Quote:
Three years after the end of the Apache wars, peacemaking chief Cochise dies. His elder son Taza shares his ideas, but brother Naiche yearns for war…and for Taza’s betrothed, Oona. Naiche loses no time in starting trouble which, thanks to a bigoted cavalry officer, ends with the proud Chiricahua Apaches on a reservation, where they are soon joined by the captured renegade Geronimo, who is all it takes to light the firecracker’s fuse… Read More »

Douglas Sirk – Thunder on the Hill (1951)

Synopsis:
A convicted murderer is being transported to Norwich for execution when a flood strands her and her guards at a convent hospital. During her stay, a nun becomes convinced of her innocence and sets out to find the real killer. Read More »

Douglas Sirk – Interlude (1957)

Synopsis:
The story of a young woman, Helen Banning, who travels to Munich in search of life experience and romance. While working for America House, she meets a famous symphony conductor, Tonio Fischer, and begins a relationship with him. She soon finds out there is much more to this man than his music, including a wife Reni Fisher, but there’s definitely more to the story, which she soon discovers. While dealing with the experiences life has thrown in her way, she is also being courted by Morley Dwyer a doctor from back home, who is currently practicing medicine in a Munich hospital. Who will she choose? 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 »

Douglas Sirk – Shockproof (1949)

Quote:
After having served 5 years in prison, for killing a man while defending her disreputable lover, Harry (John Baragrey), Jenny Marsh (Patricia Knight) is set for parole. Her parole officer, Griff Marat Cornel Wilde is determined to make Jenny go straight. For lack of other prospects Griff finds Jenny a job in his own home, something totally against regulations. At first, Jenny still has feelings for Harry, but as Griff shows her more compassion and care, she falls in love with him – which Harry seems to encourage, because he has plans to crush Griff and his dreams of political office, and the situation soon becomes even more dangerous… Read More »