Brecht, socialist dissidents and more at German Film Festival

May 3, 2019
Mack The Knife is screening as part of the Australia-wide German Film Festival in May and June.

This year’s German Film Festival, taking place in May and June, promises some stellar events. 

A must–see is Mack the Knife — Brecht's Threepenny Film (Mackie Messer — Brechts Dreigrosschenfilm) about Bertolt Brecht’s 1930s struggle to make a movie based on his successful stage play. The story of the murderous Mack the Knife and the London underworld weaves in with German capitalism and Brecht’s insistent revolutionary politics.

This is matched by the 1931 version of The 3 Penny Opera!. This “original cinematic interpretation” promises “palpable evocation of corruption and dread, set to composer Kurt Weill's irresistible score”. 

There are a number of films examining the experience of life in the former German Democratic Republic (East Germany). Among them is a bio–pic about Gerhard Gundermann, the East German coal miner who rose to prominence as a dissident rock singer. It will be interesting to see how contemporary Germany is able to make sense of his socialist politics that survived the crumbling of the Berlin Wall.

[The German Film Festival program can be seen here.]

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