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Dok Night | Symbiopsychotaxicinema
18 May @ 6:00 pm - 11:00 pm
18:00 Bar open
19:00 Vegan Food by Hafid (€ 10 / cash only)
Films for Those Who Care
Presented by Jeffrey Badcock
A series of socially engaged movies, screened once a month on Thursdays. Touching on such hot topics as immigration, homelessness, racism, education, radical gender propositions, the pandemic and gentrification, these films not only explore visionary politics, but are also chosen to stir our imagination and creativity. The essence of cinema is the collective experience, and these screenings are aimed at creating intimate communities again in an increasingly hectic and fragmented world.
NOTRE NAZI (1984)
Directed by Robert Kramer
In French and German with English subtitles
This is one of the most compelling documentaries that you have never heard of. It’s pretty difficult to frame this film properly because it’s a bit like those wooden Russian Matryoshka dolls—one hidden inside each other. Here is a try. There was once a German filmmaker named Thomas Harlan who made an amazing movie called Wundkanal: Execution in Four Voices. For the film he hires an elderly man to be an actor,who plays a character of an elderly man who was a Nazi, and who is kidnapped by left-wing RAF terrorists. The terrorists take the elderly man, tie him to a chair and interrogate him.
The next Matryoshka doll: The elderly man is played by Alfred Filbert, who took the acting job for money. But it turns out he was an actual Nazi criminal himself during the Third Reich, and was in fact one of the nine men in Hitler’s inner circle who planned the holocaust. He was a SS officer who also devised a way killing thousands of Russians in a special way—he would make their lives unbearable, both physically and psychologically, and then leave a loaded gun next to them so they would kill themselves voluntarily. It was called ‘manipulated suicide’. He was sentenced to life in prison for it in 1963, but released after twelve years. As the movie goes on, the story explodes more and more,… blurring the line between the fictional story of a Nazi officer, and the actual Nazi war criminal who is supposed to be acting. What ends up happening is Filbert is being put on trial before the camera, without any idea of what he was getting himself into. Got me so far?
And here is the next Matryoshka doll: The film we will be showing—Notre Nazi—is a documentary that was made during the shooting of the above mentioned movie Wundkanal, and it pushes the situation even further. It is absolutely riveting to watch this confronting situation unfold. Notre Nazi was directed by exiled American filmmaker Robert Kramer, who was living in Paris. What we get is an amazing situation, but Kramer then adds another layer by questioning the entire film process, revealing how we are easily manipulated by cinema—by what we are shown and what we aren’t. There are still quite a few more hidden Matryoshka dolls in this amazing flick, but it’s best to let them unravel for themselves. As director Robert Kramer himself described the shooting, once the camera started going it released a whole torrent of unpredictable energy that swept the set, and even more than the set.
This will be another ultra-rare screening of a criminally neglected cinematic gem.