Tag Archives: German

Ruth Beckermann – Jenseits des Krieges AKA East of War (1996)

Synopsis
White-tiled rooms, neon lighting; on the walls black and white photographs from an exhibition entitled ,Vernichtungskrieg’ (War of Extermination) documenting the atrocities committed by the Wehrmacht on the Eastern Front. Against this background, Ruth Beckermann and cameraman Peter Roehsler have filmed former soldiers talking about their experiences beyond the bounds of ,normal’ warfare. With a mixture of helplessness, impotence, shame, opportunism and undiminished fanaticism, witnesses from that time tell of atrocities such as the shootings of Russian prisoners-of-war, the murder of Jews and abuse of women. The differing accounts of these events demonstrate how selective perception was even in this most inhuman and brutal of environments. Read More »

Wolfgang Staudte – Die Mörder Sind Unter Uns AKA The Murderers Are Among Us (1946)

Synopsis:
Susanne Wallner returns to the ruins of Berlin from a Concentration Camp after WW2 to discover that someone else lives in her apartment: Dr. Hans Mertens, the war made him depressive and he drinks a lot of alcohol. Susanne asks him to go but he doesn’t want to, so they share Susanne’s apartment and even discover their sympathy and then their love for each other. That encourages him a little, of course. But then he hears that Ferdinand Brückner is still alive and also lives in Berlin. Brückner was his Captain during WW2, he gave the order to kill more than 100 innocent people, many children and women among them, on Christmas 1942 in Poland. Read More »

Edgar Reitz & Ula Stöckl – Geschichten vom Kübelkind AKA Tales Of The Dumpster Kid (1971)

A woman screams, a newborn baby cries. A nurse leaves the hospital and dumps a bucketfull of slimy afterbirth into a bin.Moments later, Kubelkind (“Dumpster-kid”, an Austrian insult) emerges fully grown from the slime. “Frau Dr. Welfare”, a cold, upper middle-class do-gooder discovers Kubelkind in the dustbin and plans to “save” her. But such “polymorphous-perverse, infantile monsters” have no place in normal society…. Read More »

Jean-Marie Straub – Nicht versöhnt oder Es hilft nur Gewalt wo Gewalt herrscht AKA Not Reconciled (1965)

JONATHAN ROSENBAUM:
Quote:

“Far from being a puzzle film (like Citizen Kane or Muriel), Not Reconciled is better described as a ‘lacunary film’, in the same sense that Littré defines a lacunary body: a whole composed of agglomerated crystals with intervals among them, like the interstitial spaces between the cells of an organism”. Jean-Marie Straub’s description of his second film and second Heinrich Böll adaptation (after Machorka-Muff) helps to explain why, although it has more plot than any of his other works — containing even more characters and intrigues than Othon — it is virtually impossible to paraphrase in the form of a synopsis. Read More »

Danièle Huillet & Jean-Marie Straub – Von heute auf morgen aka From Today Until Tomorrow (1997)

Quote:
Based on an unknown Schönberg opera from 1929, From Today Until Tomorrow explores one night in a not-quite loveless marriage. A husband and wife return from a party where she has flirted with another man, while he has cast an appraising eye toward an attractive, fashionably dressed acquaintance of his wife’s. Though each dreams, briefly, of leaving the marriage for the excitement and mystery of a new lover, in the end they decide stability and comfort are more important than the fleeting thrill of new romance. Read More »

Pola Beck – Am Himmel der Tag AKA Breaking Horizons (2012)

The 25-year-old Lara (Aylin Tezel) takes her studies in architecture not very seriously and spends her free time with her best friend Nora (Henrike of Kuick) in Techno clubs. She is surprised when she becomes pregnant from a one-night stand. Initially full of doubt, the young woman decides ultimately to get the child and draws new strength from it. But soon Lara’s fate takes a cruel twist. Read More »

Valie Export – Die Praxis der Liebe AKA The Practice of Love (1985)

Quote:
Judith, an investigative journalist, begins to unravel a murder mystery that implicates one of her current lovers. When she checks out a peep-show business on the seedy side of Hamburg as part of the investigation, she runs into a former boyfriend who used to be a psychiatrist but is now an arms dealer. Judith is lured back into his fold, cheating on her current lovers, one of whom is also a shrink. Despite her profession, or perhaps because of it, Judith tends to blend fantasy and reality, so small wonder she is attracted to psychoanalysts. But, two shrinks and a murder prove more than Judith can handle. Nominated for the Golden Berlin Bear at the 1985 Berlinale. Read More »