AUF WIEDERSEHEN IN SALZBURG

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by Various Authors

grade: 7

Among the numerous travel documentaries made over the years, particular attention should be paid to Auf Wiedersehen in Salzburg, made in 1958 and intended to attract more and more tourists to the ‘city where dreams live’.

A trip to…

Salzburg. The home of Mozart. The home of Austria’s most important music festival. The treasure chest containing an inestimable historical and artistic heritage. And, above all, a true architectural gem in the heart of the Salzburg region. Among the numerous travel documentaries made over the years, particular attention should be paid to Auf Wiedersehen in Salzburg, made in 1958 and intended to attract more and more tourists to the ‘city where dreams live’.

Here we start with impressive pan shots of the Mirabell garden, over the roofs of the city, over the Convention Centre, over the University Church and the old railway line, before moving on to the Volksgarten and enjoying a boat ride on a sunny spring afternoon. Auf Wiedersehen in Salzburg – recently re-presented to the audience by the Filmarchiv Austria on the occasion of the online retrospective Kino auf Sommerfrische – is part of a very large series of travel films made in Austria already after World War II.

Yes, because, in fact, the terrible war that had just ended had devastated the entire world and the only thing everyone wanted was to start again even stronger than before. What better opportunity, then, to focus primarily on tourism, with all the potential that a country like Austria had to offer? Thus, numerous travel documentaries were released, all of the same kind as Auf Wiedersehen in Salzburg.

And even though all these short films – generally conceived for a screening before the actual show (just like newsreels) – are, stylistically speaking, all very similar to each other, we cannot fail to recognise a certain lyricism in such works.

This is probably due to the characteristic pastel-coloured cinematography (typical of Agfa films), just as it is also due to the old-fashioned atmospheres, which, when watched after several decades, seem to acquire even more charm. These, then, are images of an era of rebirth. Images of an era in which the consequences of one of the darkest periods of the last century were still strongly felt. Images of a time when, with pride and dignity, people were slowly regaining possession of life and all the possibilities it could offer.

This, then, makes Auf Wiedersehen in Salzburg a precious little document. This, together with evocative images of the city and a finale in which we see magical Salzburg at sunset, makes this interesting documentary even more fascinating. All this makes for a small Austrian reality of which one cannot wait to become part.

Original title: Auf Wiedersehen in Salzburg
Directed by: Various Authors
Country/year: Austria / 1958
Running time: 5’
Genre: documentary
Screenplay: Various Authors
Cinematography: Various Authors
Produced by: Various Authors

Info: the website of the Filmarchiv Austria