Scen.: Heinz-Hermann Schwerdtfeger. F.: Erichhans Foerster. Mus.: Hans Ebert. Prod.: Ufa Kulturabteilung. DCP. D.: 13’. Col.
Farmers shown in travelogue style against a picturesque backdrop, recorded in Agfacolor. Churches and town squares appear in faded greens and pale browns, suggesting an early 20th century postcard. In this Kulturfilm, made to promote various regions of the Third Reich, the onscreen idyll is only briefly disturbed when a panning shot of a spring stream arrives at three soldiers’ graves. As part of the postwar denazification of German cinema, the British Control Commission deemed the film unsuitable for redistribution – a clear mistake, especially as other titles in the series feature swastikas flashing in Agfa red. Nothing of the sort here. Of greater significance perhaps are the things one doesn’t see, such as the evidence of the French cultural heritage of the location (made ‘purely’ Germanic). It’s tempting to think that the censor, too, saw the things not in the film, finding it hard to believe that this celluloid heaven could be devoid of any sign of the hell existing outside the frame.
by courtesy of Friedrich-Wilhelm-Murnau-Stiftung.
Restored in 2K in 2017 by Deutsches Filminstitut & Filmmuseum in collaboration with BKM – Beuftragte der Bundesregierung für Kultur und Medien, E ERC Advanced Grant: FilmColors at Haghefilm laboratory from 35mm positive prints held at Bundesarchiv and Deutsches Filminstitut & Filmmuseum