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Rhythmus 21 (1923)

5.6
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Ratings: 5.6/10 from 653 users  
Reviews: 5 user | 4 critic

Black and white rectangular images fade in and out of the screen. Their movement make them sometimes look like they're panning from side to side. Their movement also make the black and ... See full summary »

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Title: Rhythmus 21 (1923)

Rhythmus 21 (1923) on IMDb 5.6/10

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Storyline

Black and white rectangular images fade in and out of the screen. Their movement make them sometimes look like they're panning from side to side. Their movement also make the black and white individually change from foreground to background and visa versa. Written by Huggo

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Genres:

Animation | Short

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Release Date:

10 May 1925 (Germany)  »

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Rhythmus 21  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Featured in Free Radicals: A History of Experimental Film (2012) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Shapes
4 February 2009 | by (Australia) – See all my reviews

Hans Richter's 'Rhythmus 21 (1921)' has modest enough aspirations, and I suppose it's fair to say that it fulfills them adequately. As far as "geometric shapes increasing and decreasing in size" cinema goes, this is a vaguely interesting short film that takes a simple concept and does simple things with it. Though ostensibly exploring rhythm through geometry, 'Rhythmus 21' is more interesting in terms of illusory three-dimensional depth, with each shape's status as a foreground or background object seemingly changing as its actual size changes. Though I can't recommend this avant-garde short as being especially inspiring or insightful, the aesthetically-pleasing visuals make for a worthwhile enough three minutes.

'Rhythmus 21' is also quite different from the three other works I've thus far seen from Hans Richter. 'Ghosts Before Breakfast (1928),' 'Inflation (1928)' and 'Race Symphony (1928)' were live-action short films that put the technique of Soviet montage to good use, and nobody can deny that Richter had a superb eye for editing. The abstract animation of this effort is not technically notable, but nonetheless signalled the arrival of a new wave of avant-garde film-making in the 1920s. Richter would soon be joined by the likes of Man Ray, Walter Ruttmann and Viking Eggeling {in fact, Ruttmann probably got there first with 'Opus I (1921)'}. I wonder what 'Rhythmus 23 (1923)' has in store for me!


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