"30. Januar 1945" was shown in German cinemas in 1965. It features the color propaganda movie Kolberg (1945) (the last movie effort from the Third Reich) and a documentary depicting the ... See full summary »
I went to see this at the cinema in Vienna, fully expecting to hate it...after all it was directed by one of cinematic history's all-time villains, Veit Harlan, who directed the notoriously antisemitic drama Jud Suss.
And yet...I found myself drawn into the story in spite of myself, and in spite of the fact that Kristina Soderbaum (Harlan's wife) lacks charisma, a charge which can't be laid at the door of her co-star, Carl Raddatz, who is one of those ugly-but-sexy men, and has a distinct screen presence.
The reason? The film is so poetic, so haunting, that even though its melodramatic tale is much-ado-about-nothing in some ways, it burrows beneath your defences. It is' at times beautiful to look at, and the score is often overpoweringly evocative. Proof that in artistic terms at least, even villains are not necessarily two-dimensional.
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