Listen to the Radio – produced by NIkolaus Geyrhalter, directed by Jakob Brossmann and David Paede, and focusing on the radio station Ö1 – seems to us more than an extremely nationalistic documentary, it is actually a true declaration of love to Austria and to a reality that is so important to it, as one of the few manifestations that attempt to overcome the not easy political and economic moment.
The short film Baroque Statues proves to be a decisive forerunner of the turn that would take painter Maria Lassnig’s poetics in the years to come. Perfectly faithful to what the artist had already realised in painting, the central figure is precisely the human body, always seen as a prison, whose forms take on ever less defined characteristics, aiming for an ideal final liberation.
It is not surprising that a feature film like 1. April 2000 (a fine fantapolitical satire directed by Wolfgang Liebeneiner) was made precisely in 1952, seven years after the end of the world war and only three years before the Austrian State Treaty by which, among other things, the nation’s neutrality was officially proclaimed.
On the occasion of the pre-opening of the 76th Venice Film Festival, the feature film Ecstasy, a 1933 co-production between Czechoslovakia and Austria directed by Gustav Machaty, which caused quite a scandal at the time, will be screened. Merit for its success, (also) a very young Hedy Lamarr. But who was, in fact, Hedy Lamarr? It was not only her career as an actress that made her go down in history, in fact it is also thanks to this extraordinary personality that all of us, nowadays, can enjoy that useful invention called wi-fi.
Over the years, many books have been written about Billy Wilder. Considered to be one of the greatest personalities of the Golden Age of Hollywood, this brilliant Austrian naturalised American director – born Samuel Wilder – has influenced and continues to influence the world with his personal approach to the seventh art.
The smart comedy What have we done to deserve this?, the second feature by actress and screenwriter Eva Spreitzhofer, which had its Italian premiere during the festival Sotto le Stelle dell’Austria 2019, aims to break up every cliché by focusing on a world with which we are in close contact, but of which we in fact know far too little.