Cinema Lumiere - Sala Scorsese > 16:00


Hermann Kosterlitz
Introduced by

Rainer Knepperges


Wednesday 28/06/2023


Original version with subtitles


Film Notes

She almost has saved enough money to buy herself a cow: Katharina (Franziska Gaal) longs for self-sufficiency, but for now she works as a kitchen hand for a rich industrialist (Otto Wallburg). A poor, illiterate peasant girl, she is shunned even by her fellow servants – and in one of the film’s many ironic twists it is precisely this, her low social status, that attracts the interest of Hans von Gerstikow (Hans Holt). A flashy playboy of somewhat dubious social standing himself, he starts wooing Katharina in order to gain access to another woman, the daughter of her employer.
Katharina – die Letzte is the last of three hugely successful films Gaal made with the well-matched creative team of director Hermann Kosterlitz, producer Joe Pasternak, and screenwriter Felix Joachimson. Even more so than the previous two, it combines the musical-comedy tradition with a fairy-tale-like structure and feel, with Cinderella being the most obvious influence. Drawing on established popular fantasies, Kosterlitz and Joachimson craft an intricate narrative in which escapist sentimentality and social realism are two sides of the same coin. Gaal’s performance of enlightened naivete is very much at the centre of it. Her Katharina is a holy fool, incapable of falsehood and pretence, and it is this trust in the world and its surface appearances, that makes her the centre of every intrigue. In the end she who sees through nobody uncovers the falseness of every- body. While her purest of hearts can only be corrupted by the truest of loves.

Lukas Foerster

Cast and Credits

Sog.: Sándor Hunyady. Scen.: Felix Joachimson, Karl Noti. F.: Ted Pahle. M.: Viktor Gertler. Scgf.: Erwin Scharf. Mus.: Nicholas Brodszky. Canzoni: Fritz Rotter. Int.: Franziska Gaal (Katharina), Hans Holt (Hans von Gerstikow), Hans Holden (Eduard), Otto Wallburg (Sixtus Braun), Dorothy Poole (Sybill Braun), Ernö Verebes (Tobby). Prod.: Joe Pasternak per Universal-Film GmbH. DCP. Bn