Author Topic: Leni Riefenstahl  (Read 4088 times)

Sam the Cinema Snob

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Re: Leni Riefenstahl
« Reply #20 on: March 31, 2011, 10:36:10 PM »
Olympia

The Olympics have never been this exciting.

Sam the Cinema Snob

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Re: Leni Riefenstahl
« Reply #21 on: April 14, 2011, 10:12:39 PM »
Tiefland

The longest film ever.....to make

1SO

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Re: Leni Riefenstahl
« Reply #22 on: April 14, 2011, 11:27:32 PM »
Interesting review and marathon. Sounds mysteriously meta. I don't know how you can pass up The Wonderful, Horrible Life of Leni Riefenstahl now unless you want the work to speak for itself.

Sam the Cinema Snob

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Re: Leni Riefenstahl
« Reply #23 on: April 14, 2011, 11:44:18 PM »
I think it's already been alluded to, but yea, I'm going to watch the doc to close out the marathon as a "surprise."

Sam the Cinema Snob

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Re: Leni Riefenstahl
« Reply #24 on: May 06, 2011, 03:12:10 PM »

EricWHMPodcast

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Re: Leni Riefenstahl
« Reply #25 on: May 06, 2011, 04:59:23 PM »
The two most famous documentary films of hers I saw were not terribly impressive even independent of the politics.  But besides that, there is this weird martyrdom complex some people assign to her, like she was somehow the victim of what happened to her, and that is pretty loathsome.  Far as I can tell she was a mediocre propagandist, that fashioned her not so passive complicity with Nazism into a crown of thorns.  I think if she made the exact same movies in Britain she would be a footnote in a film history book.

I think what you're overlooking here is several key factors. I find her filmmaking style utterly riveting. The shots she uses, the way she films people, and the way it all looks is sort of the first of its kind. I think she definitely influenced modern moviemaking. Say what you want about the films (I actually think Triumph of the Will and Olympia are quite visually impressive) but what makes them such effective propaganda is subtly.

The politics of a film like Triumph of the Will isn't really given just from Hitler's mouth. However, he descends from the Heavens in an airplane at the start. The way she films the German soldiers, the up shots of Hitler, it's crafted in a way to show he is authority, he is given to us by God, and the German people have a massive, 'undefeatable,' proud army. It's a very good propaganda film because it isn't just juxtaposing Jews with rats. Frankly, that'd be tacky.

A good propaganda film that blends the in your face politics and great filmmaking is Battleship Potemkin though. Hard to beat Sergei Eisenstein. When the Cossacks descend the staircase too? Wow.

I just ousted myself as a lover of propaganda films. Well, the Soviets and Nazis did do them better than Frank Capra's "Why We Fight" series. Really like Capra, but bravo Eisenstein and Riefenstahl.

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Re: Leni Riefenstahl
« Reply #26 on: May 06, 2011, 06:30:16 PM »
It's a shame that 3hrs on Leni Riefenstahl can feel too long while a much longer documentary on the Nightmare on Elm Street Series can be more satisfying.

Sam the Cinema Snob

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Re: Leni Riefenstahl
« Reply #27 on: May 06, 2011, 07:29:36 PM »
Yea, I think the reason I found the Nighmare documentary so engaging is that you had so many different perspectives and angles to it, where this is just all Riefenstahl, which is interesting, but ultimately not enough for me.

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Re: Leni Riefenstahl
« Reply #28 on: May 06, 2011, 09:58:08 PM »
Just curious but have you seen The Beaches of Agnes. Having not seen either film, I'm sure I'm off base but that is a look back on Agnes Varda's career directed by and starring Varda. So I think the single-minded approach can work, it just depends. I wonder if Beaches suffers from a similar narrow focus.

Sam the Cinema Snob

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Re: Leni Riefenstahl
« Reply #29 on: May 06, 2011, 10:00:11 PM »
Not seen it, but heard about it multiple times.

 

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