• THE FAVOURITE, Fox Searchlight © Original copyright holders

    John Shanks

    Some recent historical period screen dramas systematically include presentist anachronisms and ironic humour. Examples are TV series Bridgerton and The Great and movies MARY QUEEN OF SCOTS and THE FAVOURITE. ‘Ironic period screen drama’ demonstrates a successful method of resolving the tension between past and present which challenges all historical narratives and provides support for the view of postmodern historians that presentist anachronism can be useful in a historical narrative.

  • Kundschafter des Friedens_Teaser

    Kundschafter des Friedens, DVD, Majestic Home Entertainmen GmbH 2017 © original copyright holders.

    Tatiana Astafeva

    The article argues that an interdisciplinary phenomenological approach based on the understanding of nostalgic historical experience by Frank Ankersmit can be helpful in the critical analysis of emotionally and aesthetically charged cinematic phenomena like ostalgie. On the example of the film KUNDSCHAFTER DES FRIEDENS / OLD AGENT MEN (Robert Thalheim, 2017) the essay discusses how the analysis of the specificity of ostalgie films can contribute further to a more complex understanding of German films about the GDR past.

  • Photograph of files from the Bundesarchiv.

    Photograph of files from the Bundesarchiv.

    Andreas Kötzing © original copyright holder.

    Andreas Kötzing

    Political Film Censorship in West Germany by the Interministerieller Ausschuss für Ost/West-Filmfragen

    This article provides an introduction into the activity of the committee and scrutinizes the factual backgrounds of film censorship. Several case studies examine the motives for censoring certain films, analyse the legal and political justification of censoring, and deal with incidents of public opposition to the censorship. Finally, the article discusses the relevance of the activity of the censorship committee within an all-German cultural history.

  • PARIS, TEXAS, DVD Reverse Angle Library GmbH © original copyright holders.

    Evelyn Kreutzer

    This video essay explores and reflects on the American West in Wim Wenders’ PARIS, TEXAS (1984) and Percy Adlon’s BAGDAD CAFÉ (1987) from both a personal, and a scholarly perspective.

  • OS CAFAJESTES, Films sans Frontières © original copyright holders.

    Carolina Rocha

    Film scholar Marijcke de Valck argues that film festivals “are sites of passage that function as the gateways to cultural legitimation” (2007: 38). More recently, Andreas Kötzing and Caroline Moine have pointed out the political dimensions of these cultural events, particularly during the second half of the twentieth century: “Film festivals, whether they called themselves international or not, were at the epicenter of the various circulations, exchanges, and tensions that fueled the economic and cultural development of the Cold War” (2017: 10).

  • Macro of 35mm film and audio tracks: Sony SDDS, Dolby Digital, analog Optical and DTS time code.

    Macro of 35mm film and audio tracks: Sony SDDS, Dolby Digital, analog Optical and DTS time code.

    Macro of 35mm film and audio tracks © CC 3.0 by Rotareng.

    Winfried Pauleit
    Rasmus Greiner
    Mattias Frey


    The relationship between film and history has assumed many and varied forms over the course of time. During the twentieth century, film increasingly became a medium through which contemporary political and historical events were discussed and interpreted. Cinematic narration of history influenced twentieth-century film production in myriad ways and constantly challenged “classical” historiography, especially its function of disseminating historical knowledge.

  • Winfried Pauleit

    Prominent Moments of Cinematic Self-Reflexivity

    History produces sound recordings. And sound recordings shape history in turn. This interrelationship is clearly attested to in recordings of historical voices, such as that of John F. Kennedy’s speech before the Schöneberger Rathaus in Berlin on June 26, 1963. Sections of this recording have taken on a life of their own, becoming iconic sound bites over the course of their frequent rebroadcasting, not least Kennedy’s famous phrase “Ich bin ein Berliner”.

  • JEW SUSS: RISE AND FALL, Oskar Roehler, D/AUT 2010

    JEW SUSS: RISE AND FALL, Oskar Roehler, D/AUT 2010

    JEW SUSS: RISE AND FALL, DVD Concorde Video © original copyright holders.

    Mattias Frey

    Language and Dialect in the Historical Film

    The pursuit of authenticity is film’s dominant mode of historical representation. For the overwhelming majority of historical film makers and audiences, authenticity signifies a realistic historical experience, an effective suspension of temporal-spatial disbelief. Authenticity, as the engine of mainstream historical filmmaking, has three chief functions: as an aesthetic strategy, a reception discourse and a marketing discourse.



    WALTZ WITH BASHIR, DVD Pandora Film © original copyright holders.

    Rasmus Greiner

    Sound Design and History

    This article explores the role played by film sound in the audio-visual construction of historical dimensions of experience. This exploration does not treat the auditory level in isolation but considers how it interacts with moving images, montages, aesthetic and narrative concepts within the audio-visual histosphere.