A beautiful summer day. A garden. A terrace. A woman and a man sit at a table beneath the trees, with a soft summer wind. In the distance, in the vast plain, the silhouette of Paris. A ... See full summary »
After the wild life-style of a famous young German photographer almost gets him killed, he goes to Palermo, Sicily to take a break. Can the beautiful city and a beautiful local woman help him calm himself down?
Mike Max is a Hollywood producer who became powerful and rich thanks to brutal and bloody action films. His ignored wife Paige is close to leaving him. Suddenly Mike is kidnapped by two ... See full summary »
A rare gem of cinematic storytelling that weaves docudrama, fictional reenactment, and experimental photography into a powerful, reflective work on the early days of German cinema. The film... See full summary »
On location in Portugal, a film crew runs out of film while making their own version of Roger Corman's Day the World Ended (1955). The producer is nowhere to be found and director Friedrich... See full summary »
Aging Cuban musicians whose talents had been virtually forgotten following Castro's takeover of Cuba, are brought out of retirement by Ry Cooder, who travelled to Havana in order to bring the musicians together, resulting in triumphant performances of extraordinary music, and resurrecting the musicians' careers.
Wolfgang Niedecken is the German Bruce Springsteen, with the same range of material and the same celebrity, even though he sings in a dialect that is largely incomprehensible to anyone not from Cologne. The film is a homage to BAP (named for Niedecken's father - Bapp meaning father).
The film inadvertently maintains a tension between BAP's serious, lonely lyrics, the absurdity of singing a song in a language no one else understands, and a Cologne that it tries to portray as a serious, tragic, rebellious city, but the narrative never gets away from the mythic, folkloric Cologne that most Carneval-goers know. It is a very strange Carnevalesque.
The film seems to have been part of Niedecken's current attempts to establish his legacy, both by helping to launch younger musicians' careers and his personal and stage-personal love-affair with Cologne. Interestingly, it also skirts over the reasons behind BAP's failed tour of East Germany, which would have provided some negative balance to the story.
In 2003, the German Ministry of Culture showed this film in Washington, and Wolfgang Niedecken was there to provide commentary. The film was not heavily funded (the sweets' girl and the projectionist, for example, were supposed to mirror the Cologne fable of Jan and Griet, but they ran out of money and left the story undeveloped).
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