Month: September 2020

SUPEREGOS

What we witness in Superegos is a true crescendo. Of emotions and of extreme situations. And the feature film – which is mainly supported by the excellent performances of André Wilms and Georg Friedrich – does not lose credibility, but, on the contrary, thanks to a script that has no particular ambitions other than to laugh at what has made nations such as Austria and Germany ‘famous’, manages to always maintain a good rhythm. Even when the ending seems a little too hasty.

FILM AND FACTORIES – PART I

The focus on the world of factories and all the potentials they offered started in Austria – as one can well imagine – during World War I. In fact, it was precisely within the factories that weapons were made to defend the nation and its citizens. It was, in fact, within the factories that weapons were made to defend their nation and their citizens. It was within the factories that, in one way or another, the foundations were laid for a possible victory at the front.

FALLING

In Falling, Barbara Albert, in staging a strong nostalgia for the past, together with the desire to find oneself and one’s affections, skilfully avoids excessive emotionalism, showing a necessary detachment and a mature rationality in observing the five protagonists closely. Detachment and rationality that, in this case, manage to make us gradually get more and more connected with each individual character.

S. M. KAISER FRANZ JOSEPH I. KEHRT AUS SEINER SOMMERRESIDENZ BAD ISCHL ZURÜCK

Of the documentary film S. M. Kaiser Franz Joseph I. kehrt aus seiner Sommerresidenz Bad Ischl zurück (‘His Majesty Emperor Franz Joseph I. returns from his summer residence in Bad Ischl’) – made in 1913 – only a twenty-five-second segment has reached us today. And yet, in spite of this, we cannot fail to acknowledge to a work like this an undoubted historical importance, as well as a great, great fascination.

MASKERADE

Presented in competition at the Venice Film Festival 1934, Maskerade won the Best Screenplay Award. While following the canons of the Wiener Films, with a story set in the world of the upper middle class, its splendour, sumptuous costumes and music, both Willi Forst and screenwriter Walter Reisch wanted to give the whole thing a different touch, pointing the finger at a hypocritical and decadent society reminiscent of Arthur Schnitzler’s works.

PAULA WESSELY – “WHY WOULD YOU LIKE ME?”

The first Austrian actress to win – in 1935 – the Volpi Cup at the Venice Film Festival, after a successful theatre career, the previous year Paula Wessely – in the role of the shy and brave Leopoldine Dur in Willi Forst’s Maskerade – had also finally won over film audiences in Venice. Thanks to her innate talent for acting. Thanks, perhaps, also to that particular hairstyle with a side parting that was soon to become fashionable. But thanks also – probably – to that sentence – “Why would you like me?” – which seemed so pertinent to the situation.

QUO VADIS, AIDA?

In competition at the 77th Venice Film Festival, Jasmila Zbanic gives us, with her Quo vadis, Aida?, a powerful and deeply painful story. And in order to stage the war and the personal drama of the protagonist, a skilful minimalist mise en scene proves to be the director’s best ally, who, in turn, knows how to reach the audience by skilfully avoiding any rhetoric. Except for a few missteps as we approach the finale.