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Von Caligari zu Hitler: Das deutsche Kino im Zeitalter der Massen (2014)

Focuses on the Weimar Republic (1918-1933) and its 'collective spirit' in cinema. The purpose of film as a cultural tool is examined. Based on celebrated sociologist Siegfried Kracauer's seminal book 'From Caligari to Hitler' (1947).

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A documentary about the seminal horror film The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1920) and the purpose of cinema as a cultural tool according to Siegfried Kracauer (1889-1966).

Director: Rüdiger Suchsland
Stars: Martin Engler, Erika Gregor, Ulrich Gregor
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Cast

Credited cast:
Rüdiger Suchsland ...
Narrator (voice)
Hans Henrik Wöhler ...
Narrator (voice)
...
Himself (voice) (archive footage)
...
Himself
...
Himself
Thomas Elsaesser ...
Himself
Eric D. Weitz ...
Himself
Elisabeth Bronfen ...
Herself
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
...
Himself (archive footage)
...
Herself (archive footage)
Brigitte Borchert ...
Herself (archive footage)
...
Himself (archive footage)
...
Herself (archive footage)
...
Herself (archive footage)
...
Herself (archive footage)
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Storyline

"Metropolis" (1927), "The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari" (1920), "M" (1931), "Nosferatu" (1922), "People on Sunday" (1930), "Berlin, Symphony of a Metropolis" (1927) all rank among the classics and most influential films of European Cinema. FROM CALIGARI TO HITLER tells the story of early German Cinema as the story of social and cultural upheaval in the first republic, between 1918 and 1933. Siegfried Kracauer, who wrote the groundbreaking book 'From Caligari to Hitler' (1947) on this 'Weimar Cinema', is a central figure, as is Fritz Lang, the most versatile of all Weimar directors. The viewer will encounter the cast members of the young Republic's stage: Marlene Dietrich, Louise Brooks, Emil Jannings, directors such as G.W.Pabst and F.W. Murnau, writers like Billy Wilder and many more - those who helped shape the new art of cinema. Written by Rüdiger Suchsland

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What does cinema know that we don't?


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Release Date:

28 May 2015 (Germany)  »

Also Known As:

Caligarista Hitleriin. Saksalainen elokuva massojen aikakaudella  »

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1.78 : 1
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Trivia

[Suchsland on Von Caligari zu Hitler: Das deutsche Kino im Zeitalter der Massen (2014)] Youth, freedom, irony, curiosity: Weimar is Modernity at its best and 'the' time of German cinema: By far the prime and richest period of our filmmaking. Cinema mirrors the turbulent era of the Twenties. These movies had it all! But more or less everything of it is forgotten, reduced to two or three footnotes. I wanted to take us all on an adventurous trip to this lost time, a trip which should entertain, move, surprise and remind us all of an open wound in our past. Siegfried Kracauer, a forgotten genius of cultural critique, is the perfect guide to an era, which is fascinating in its contradictions. This fascination and, yes: my love for this time and its cinema, I hope to share. See more »

Connections

Features The Last Laugh (1924) See more »

Soundtracks

Berlin: Symphony of a Metropolis (Berlín. Die Sinfonie der Großstadt)
Composed and conducted by Timothy Brock
Performed by Washington Chamber Orchestra
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User Reviews

 
An Essential Documentary on Film History
7 January 2016 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Focuses on the Weimar Republic (1918-1933) and its 'collective spirit' in cinema. The purpose of film as a cultural tool is examined. Based on celebrated sociologist Siegfried Kracauer's seminal book 'From Caligari to Hitler' (1947).

As someone who loves Kracauer's book and the Weimar period of German cinema, this documentary was a godsend. I would have preferred it was dubbed rather than subtitled, but that is a small matter (and one that should not even bother me considering how many of the films referenced are subtitled).

Do I think the films of the 1920s predicted the rise of Hitler? No. But I absolutely love the exploration of them and German culture. The book has more detail than a film could hope to cover in 90-120 minutes, but the film brings everything to life. The clips are good (some of these films are hard to find), but even just daily life in Germany... very nice.


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