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Olympia Part Two: Festival of Beauty (1938)
"Olympia 2. Teil - Fest der Schönheit" (original title)

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Reviews: 13 user | 13 critic

The document of the 1936 Olympics at Berlin, orchestrated as Nazi propaganda.

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Cast

Credited cast:
Sheigo Arai ...
Himself - Swimmer, Japan
Jack Beresford ...
Himself - Rower, Britain
Ralf Berzsenyi ...
Himself - Small-Bore Rifle, Hungary
Ferenc Csík ...
Himself - Swimmer, Hungary
Richard Degener ...
Himself - Springboard Diver, USA
Willemijntje den Ouden ...
Herself - Swimmer, Holland
Charles des Jammonières ...
Himself - Free Pistol, France
Velma Dunn ...
Herself - Platfom Diver, USA
Konrad Frey ...
Himself - Gymnastics, Germany
Marjorie Gestring ...
Herself - Springboard Diver, USA
Albert Greene ...
Himself - Springboard Diver, USA
Tetsuo Hamuro ...
Himself - 1st Place: 200m Breaststroke, Japan
Josef Hasenöhrl ...
Himself - Single Sculls Rower, Austria
Heinz Hax ...
Himself - Rapid-Fire Pistol, Germany
...
Himself
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Storyline

After being commissioned by the 1936 Olympic Committee to create a feature film of the Berlin Olympics, Riefenstahl shot a documentary that celebrates the human body by combining the poetry of bodies in motion with close-ups of athletes in the heat of competition. The production tends to glorify the young male body and, some say, expresses the Nazi attitude toward athletic prowess. Miss Riefenstahl captures the grace of athletes during field hockey, soccer, bicycling, equestrian, aquatic and gymnastic events. Highlights are the Pentathlon and the Decathlon, which was won by American Glenn Morris; it ends with the triumphant conclusion of the games. Written by Fiona Kelleghan <fkelleghan@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Documentary | Sport

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Details

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Release Date:

29 March 1940 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Olympia Part Two: Festival of Beauty  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Leni Riefenstahl first contacted the biggest German film studio, Ufa, in order for them to finance the film. Friedrich A. Mainz, the studio head refused because of cost, so she contacted Tobis-Filmkunst who agreed to finance the film and put up ½ million Reichmarks upfront (three times the cost of a standard film at the time). The contract was only signed in December 1936, four months after the end of the Olympic Games. See more »

Connections

Featured in The Story of Film: An Odyssey: Episode #1.4 (2011) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Even more beautiful as part 1.
6 August 2008 | by (Groningen, The Netherlands) – See all my reviews

This is an even more beautiful looking documentary than was the case with the first Riefenstahl 1936 Olympics documentary "Olympia 1. Teil - Fest der Völker". Perhaps it's because this movie focuses more on the more gracious looking sports, than was the case in the first movie, which focused purely on the sports being played within the Olympic stadium. Or perhaps it's also because the Netherlands actually won some gold medals in this part ;). This movie mostly focuses on all of the other sport being played outside of the stadium, indoors and outdoors. Sports such as fencing, boxing, swimming, hockey and everything else you can expect during the Olympics. Most sports are still featured now days at the Olympics. It's of course great seeing all those rs and how they were being played back then in 1936. Some things (for the better) have really changed.

Because of the more wide diversity of sports, the documentary also seems like it's going faster as well. Basically every 5 minutes we get to see a completely different sport, being set also at a totally different location again. It also perhaps makes all more exciting to watch as well.

Just like "Olympia 1. Teil - Fest der Völker" it's a beautifully shot documentary, that set the standards for future documentary making. Leni Riefenstahl was a real pioneer in documentary making, regardless of what you think of her motives. Many of the used techniques are now common to the filming of sports.

This movie also definitely feels less propaganda like than was still the case with "Olympia 1. Teil - Fest der Völker". It still remains a weird sight though, seeing German officers helping out the athletes, as Olympic officials. This of course got very all well organized and planned out by Nazi authorities, which basically used the 1936 as one big piece of propaganda. At least it doesn't show as much of Hitler (actually no Hitler at all) and Nazi flag waving as was the case in the first part.

A great and important achievement in the filming of sport and documentary making in particular, from Leni Riefenstahl.

9/10

http://bobafett1138.blogspot.com/


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