The Operatic in New German Cinema

Ulrike Sieglohr

in Film's Musical Moments

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print July 2006 | ISBN: 9780748623440
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748651115 | DOI:
The Operatic in New German Cinema

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This chapter analyses the way in which opera has been used in three German films: Werner Schroeter's Eike Katappa (1969), Alexander Kluge's Die Macht der Gefühle (The Power of Emotion, 1983) and Hans Jürgen Syberberg's Hitler, Ein Film aus Deutschland (Our Hitler, 1977). It considers Schroeter's mobilisation of an emotionally-charged and performance-driven style which radically reworks Germany's operatic traditions. It also examines Syberberg's use of Wagnerian opera to articulate the complex and contradictory meanings attached to West German identity in the pre-unification period. A particular concern is Schroeter's repeated return to the opera singer Maria Callas, a subject of many of his films, who offers an important reminder of the way in which star images are intertextual.

Keywords: Germany; films; Werner Schroeter; Eike Katappa; Alexander Kluge; Die Macht der Gefühle; Hans Jürgen Syberberg; Our Hitler; opera; Maria Callas

Chapter.  5909 words. 

Subjects: Film

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