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Out of the Shadows: German Expressionism and Beyond

Production still from Metropolis

Production still from Metropolis 

Out of the Shadows: German Expressionism and Beyond 

The Australian Cinémathèque presents a major retrospective season showcasing German film in an expressionist vein from the silent period onwards. In Berlin after World War One, a striking style of filmmaking developed that experimented with set design, lighting and shadow. These ‘expressionist’ films, rich in symbolism, played on images of madness, monsters and modernity. Ranging from classics to lesser known films setting the scene for the period, ‘Out the Shadows’ includes Weimar musicals and comedies, classic film monsters, cities of the future, battles against nature, femme fatales, as well as recent films influenced by expressionist aesthetics. The program also charts the move of German directors to America in response to the rise of Nazism, their influence on Hollywood film production and on the development of film noir and horror genres.

Program curated for the Australian Cinémathèque by Russell Merritt PhD, Adjunct Professor of Film Studies at University of California, Berkeley (USA). The Australian Cinémathèque acknowledges the generous assistance of Andrew Youdell (British Film Institute), Klaus Krischok and Claudia Kuehn (Goethe-Institut Australien), the National Film and Sound Archive (Canberra) and Anke Hahn (Deutsche-Kinemathek).

Weimar Smiles:  Musicals, Comedies, and Truffles

Ernst Lubitsch Die Puppe (The Doll) 1919
Wilhelm Thiele Die Drei von der Tankstelle (Three from the Filling Station) 1930
Ernst Lubitsch Monte Carlo 1930
Georg Wilhelm Pabst Die 3groschenoper (Threepenny Opera) 1931
Mitchell Leisen Lady in the Dark 1944
Herbert Ross Pennies from Heaven 1981

Caligari and His Sideshows:  Mental and Representational Instability

Robert Wiene Das Kabinett des Dr Caligari (The Cabinet of Dr Caligari) 1919
Robert Wiene Genuine: The Tale of a Vampire 1920
Karl Heinz Martin Von Morgens Bis Mitternacht (From Morn to Midnight) 1920
Robert Wiene Raskolnikov 1923
Arthur Robison Schatten - Eine Nächtliche Halluzination (Warning Shadows) 1923
Teinosuke Kinugasa Kurutta Ippêji (Page of Madness) 1926
Jean Epstein La Chute de la Maison Usher (The Fall of the House Usher) 1928
Robert Florey & Slavko Vorkapich The Life and Death of 9413 - A Hollywood Extra 1928
Roy Rowland The 5,000 Fingers of Dr. T 1953
Charles Laughton The Night of the Hunter 1955
Marc Caro and Jean-Pierre Jeunet La Cité des Enfants Perdus (The City of Lost Children) 1995
Guy Maddin The Heart of the World 2000

Weimar's Big Shows: Spectacle, History, Folklore

Ernst Lubitsch Madame DuBarry aka Passion 1919
Fritz Lang Die Müde Tod (Destiny aka Between Two Worlds) 1921
Fritz Lang Die Nibelungen: Siegfried (Siegfried) 1923
Fritz Lang Die Nibelungen: Kriemhilds Rache (Kriemhilde’s Revenge) 1923
Leo Birinsky & Paul Leni Das Wachsfigurenkabinett (Waxworks) 1924
Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau Faust - Eine Deutsche Volkssage (Faust: A German Folk-Tale) 1926
Paul Leni The Man Who Laughs 1928
William Dieterle Hunchback of Notre Dame 1939
Chuck Jones What’s Opera Doc? 1957
Peter Gorski Faust 1960
István Szabó Mephisto 1981

Shrecklichkeit: Classic Monsters and Their Spawn 

Paul Wegener & Carl Boese Golem, wie er in die Welt cam (The Golem) 1920
Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau Nosferatu 1922
Robert Wiene Orlacs Hände (The Hands of Orlac) 1925
Karl Freund Mad Love 1935
James Whale Bride of Frankenstein 1935
Werner Herzog Nosferatu: Phantom der Nacht (Nosferatu the Vampyre) 1979
Letzebuergesh & E Elias Merhige Shadow of the Vampire 2000

Cities Of The Future

Fritz Lang Metropolis 1926
David Butler Just Imagine 1930
William Cameron Menzies Things to Come 1936
Luc Besson The Fifth Element 1997

Cold City Streets

Karl Grune Die Strasse (The Street) 1923
D W Griffith Isn’t Life Wonderful? 1924
Georg Wilhelm Pabst Die Freudlose Gasse (The Joyless Street) 1925
Piel Jutzi Mutter Küsters’ Fahrt ins Glück (Mother Küsters’ Goes to Heaven aka Mother Küsters’ Journey to Happiness) 1929
Ernö Metzner Polizeibericht Überfall (Accident) 1929
Piel Jutzi Berlin Alexanderplatz 1931
Sun Yu Tianming (Daybreak) 1932
Robert Siodmak Phantom Lady 1944
William Dieterle Dark City 1950
Rainer Werner Fassbinder Mutter Küsters' Fahrt zum Himmel (Mother Küsters’ Ascent to Heaven) 1975

The Wonders Of City Streets

Walter Ruttmann Berlin: Die Sinfonie der Grosstadt (Berlin: Symphony of a City) 1927
Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans 1927
Joe May Asphalt 1929
Ewald André Dupont Moulin Rouge 1928
Robert Siodmak & Edgar G Ulmer Menschen am Sonntag (People on Sunday) 1929
Ewald André Dupont Piccadilly 1929
Wim Wenders Der Himmel Über Berlin (Wings of Desire) 1988

Mountain Films

Arnold Fanck & Georg Wilhelm Pabst Die Weisse Hölle Vom Piz Palü (White Hell of Pitz Palu) 1929
William Van der Veer & Joe Rucker With Byrd at the South Pole 1930
Béla Balázs & Leni Riefenstahl Das Blaue Licht (The Blue Light) 1932
Herbert G. Ponting 90º South 1933
Leopold Lindtberg Die Letzte Chance (The Last Chance) 1945
Guy Maddin Careful 1992

Femme Fatales

Henrik Galeen Alraune (A Daughter of Destiny) 1927
Georg Wilhelm Pabst Die Büchse der Pandora (Pandora’s Box) 1929
Georg Wilhelm Pabst Tagebuch Einer Verlorenen (Diary of a Lost Girl) 1929
Josef von Sternberg Blaue Engel (Blue Angel) 1930
Josef von Sternberg The Scarlet Empress 1934
Fritz Lang Scarlet Street 1945

For Your Eyes Only:  Ops, Surveillance, and Saboteurs

Fritz Lang Dr Mabuse, der Spieler: Der grosse Spieler, Ein Bild der Zeit (Teil 1) (Dr Mabuse, The Gambler: The Great Gambler, A Picture of our Time (Part 1))1921
Fritz Lang Dr Mabuse, der Spieler: Inferno, Ein Spiel von Menschen unserer Zeit (Teil 2) (Dr Mabuse, The Gambler: Inferno, Men of our Time (Part 2)) 1922
Fritz Lang Spione (Spies) 1928
Fritz Lang M – Eine Stadt sucht einen Mörder (M – A Town is looking for a Murderer) 1931
Fritz Lang Ministerium der Angst (Ministry of Fear) 1944
Anthony Mann The Black Book aka Reign of Terror 1949

On The War Front

Georg Wilhelm Pabst Westfront 1918 1930
Cyril Gardner, Karl Hartl & Luis Trenker The Doomed Battalion 1932
Billy Wilder Five Graves To Cairo 1943

Lost Souls

Richard Oswald Anders als die Andern (Different from the Others) 1919
Richard Oswald Der Reigen - Ein Werdegang (The Merry- Go-Round) 1920
Leopold Jessner & Paul Leni Die Hintertreppe (Backstairs) 1921
Lupu Pick Scherben (Shattered) 1921
Lupu Pick Sylvester Tragödie Einer Nacht (Sylvester) 1923
Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau Der Letzte Mann (The Last Man) 1924
Ewald André Dupont Varieté (Variety) 1925
Georg Wilhelm Pabst Geheimnisse einer Seele (Secrets of a Soul) 1926
Alfred Hitchcock The Lodger 1926
Joe May Heimkehr (Homecoming) 1928
Leontine Sagan Mädchen in Uniform (Maidens in Uniform) 1931

Berlin Alexanderplatz

Rainer Werner Fassbinder Berlin Alexanderplatz: Remastered 2006

Lotte Reiniger

Lotte Reiniger Die Abenteuer des Prinzen Achmed (The Adventures of Prince Achmed) 1926
Lotte Reiniger Harlekin (Harlequin) 1931
Lotte Reiniger Snow White and Rose Red 1953
Lotte Reiniger Jack and the Beanstalk 1955
Lotte Reiniger The Star of Bethlehem 1956