Hans-Jürgen Syberberg, the Film Director as Critical by R. J. Cardullo

By R. J. Cardullo

Hans-Jürgen Syberberg is an unique, the main debatable of all of the New German administrators and a determine who has lengthy been on the leading edge of the resurgence of experimental filmmaking in his place of birth. Syberberg’s so much attribute motion pictures study fresh German historical past: a documentary, for instance, approximately Richard Wagner’s daughter-in-law, who used to be an in depth pal of Hitler (The Confessions of Winifred Wagner [1975]). yet in particular “historical” is his trilogy masking 100 years of Germany’s earlier, together with, such a lot famously, Hitler—A movie from Germany, sometimes called Our Hitler (1977). during this movie and different works, Syberberg unites fictional narrative and documentary photos in a method that's immediately cinematic and theatrical, mystical and magical.

Hans-Jürgen Syberberg, the movie Director as severe philosopher: Essays and Interviews is the 1st edited ebook in English dedicated to this director’s paintings, and comprises his most vital English-language interviews in addition to the superior English-language essays on his paintings. In sum, this ebook is an important contribution not just to the research of Syberberg’s oeuvre, but additionally to the research of German historical past and politics within the moment half the 20th century.

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Hans-Jürgen Syberberg, the Film Director as Critical Thinker: Essays and Interviews

Hans-Jürgen Syberberg is an unique, the main arguable of the entire New German administrators and a determine who has lengthy been on the forefront of the resurgence of experimental filmmaking in his fatherland. Syberberg’s such a lot attribute movies research contemporary German historical past: a documentary, for instance, approximately Richard Wagner’s daughter-in-law, who used to be a detailed pal of Hitler (The Confessions of Winifred Wagner [1975]).

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Winifred felt that Bayreuth should close, but Hitler, she says, insisted on keeping the show going, and developed the idea of the War Festival. He exempted artists from military service, and, for audiences, developed the idea of bringing soldiers, distinguished officers, nurses, and doctors who were served by the League of German Girls (BDM). The people came, were housed, fed, and entertained. Bayreuth became as much of a spectacle, it would seem, as the operas themselves. Thus the link is further established, through Winifred’s own unreflective commentary, between the operas and the use of the festivals for propaganda purposes.

The way Winifred Wagner is filmed is congruent with the attitudes she articulates, attitudes that are only too familiar—deep loyalty to country and family, service to one’s friends and to commitments, admiration and support of culture, contempt and mistrust of those who are different and threatening. What also becomes apparent is that without these virtues embedded in German culture, without “good” people like Winifred and her family, “Wolf” would have never succeeded in attaining power. The Wagners welcomed Hitler as a friend, endorsed his political ideas, sustained him while he was in prison at Landsberg, and such support seemed natural given their personal predilections.

What also becomes apparent is that without these virtues embedded in German culture, without “good” people like Winifred and her family, “Wolf” would have never succeeded in attaining power. The Wagners welcomed Hitler as a friend, endorsed his political ideas, sustained him while he was in prison at Landsberg, and such support seemed natural given their personal predilections. ” Several times, Syberberg’s technique of moving the camera from a medium shot to a close-up helps to highlight certain statements such as this one.

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