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 forefront of the resurgence of experimental filmmaking in his native land. 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 buddy of Hitler (The Confessions of Winifred Wagner ). yet specifically “historical” is his trilogy protecting 100 years of Germany’s prior, together with, such a lot famously, Hitler—A movie from Germany, often referred to as Our Hitler (1977). during this movie and different works, Syberberg unites fictional narrative and documentary photos in a mode that's instantaneously cinematic and theatrical, mystical and magical.
Hans-Jürgen Syberberg, the movie Director as serious philosopher: Essays and Interviews is the 1st edited booklet in English dedicated to this director’s paintings, and comprises his most crucial English-language interviews in addition to the superior English-language essays on his paintings. In sum, this e-book is an important contribution not just to the research of Syberberg’s oeuvre, but in addition to the examine of German heritage and politics within the moment 1/2 the 20 th century.
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Additional resources for Hans-Jürgen Syberberg, the Film Director as Critical Thinker: Essays and Interviews
Berman’s translation, as are all other translations from the German in this introduction. 3 Syberbergs Filmbuch, 111. 4 Syberbergs Filmbuch, 310. 5 Syberbergs Filmbuch, 79. 6 Syberbergs Filmbuch, 109. 7 Syberbergs Filmbuch, 46. 8 Syberbergs Filmbuch, 39. 9 Cf. ”, in Gesammelte Schriften und Dichtungen, Bd. 10 (Leipzig: E. W. Fritzsch, 1898), 36–53. 10 Syberbergs Filmbuch, 293. 11 Syberbergs Filmbuch, 285. 1 22 INTRODUCTION Syberbergs Filmbuch, 263. Alexander and Margarete Mitscherlich, Die Unfähigkeit zu trauern: Grundlagen kollektiven Verhaltens (München: Piper, 1967).
Hence the emphasis in Our Hitler on the mass support behind the Führer’s legal—and, as Syberberg underscores, democratic—accession to power. Yet even more important to this film is Hitler as a fascinating figure outside Germany and after 1945: Chaplin’s Hitler, Hollywood’s Hitler, Hitler as the incarnation of evil in the popular mind. Such an emphasis on Hitler-as-image, implicit in the title of the work, evokes Syberberg’s second theme in Our Hitler: film itself. The many motifs associated specifically with Hitler and National Socialism are intertwined here with references to the history of cinema, including Méliès, Thomas Edison, Sergei Eisenstein, Erich von Stroheim, the Expressionists, Leni Riefenstahl, and the Hays Office (responsible for enforcing the Hollywood Production Code).
You are guilty that we can no longer see wheat fields without thinking of you. ” Hitler, then, has destroyed the legitimacy of any dignified human life and left only the pursuit of money as a possibility. Here, as elsewhere, Syberberg denounces the postwar world as the locus of unfettered capitalism: Hitler’s most devastating bequest. Interestingly, this interpretation of postwar Germany is not extraneous to the West German Left’s thesis concerning the continuity of class-driven society. However, whereas the left emphasizes problems such as ownership of capital, Syberberg suggests a broader notion of capitalist society that emphasizes its hostility toward authentic culture.