(story "Die Verlobung in St. Domingo"), (screenplay)
2 wins. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

The story of the legendary King Ludwig II of Bavaria (1845-1886), his opera interest and friendship with theatre personalities such as Richard Wagner and Joseph Kainz, and at the same time a reflection of the German 1800s.

Director: Hans-Jürgen Syberberg
Stars: Harry Baer, Ingrid Caven, Hanna Köhler
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
Director: Hans-Jürgen Syberberg
Stars: Nicoletta Machiavelli, Walter Buschhoff, Franz von Treuberg
Karl May (1974)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

This ethereal, three-hour biopic is the middle film in Hans-Jürgen Syberberg's "German Trilogy" on the mythological foundations of the Third Reich.

Director: Hans-Jürgen Syberberg
Stars: Helmut Käutner, Kristina Söderbaum, Käthe Gold
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Director Hans-Jurgen Syberberg examines the rise and fall of the Third Reich in this brooding seven-hour masterpiece, which incorporates puppetry, rear-screen projection, and a Wagnerian ... See full summary »

Director: Hans-Jürgen Syberberg
Stars: Heinz Schubert, Peter Kern, Hellmut Lange
Parsifal (1982)
Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Richard Wagner's last opera has remained controversial since its first performance for its unique, and, for some, unsavory blending of religious and erotic themes and imagery. Based on one ... See full summary »

Director: Hans-Jürgen Syberberg
Stars: Armin Jordan, Martin Sperr, Robert Lloyd
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Director: Hans-Jürgen Syberberg
Stars: Edith Clever
Die Nacht (1985)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
Director: Hans-Jürgen Syberberg
Stars: Edith Clever
Biography | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
Director: Hans-Jürgen Syberberg
Stars: Walter Sedlmayr


Complete credited cast:
Alice Ottawa
Michael König
Carla Egerer ...
(as Carla Aulaulu)
Peter Moland
June Berman
Sigi Graue
Wolfgang Haas ...
Siegfried Schmidt ...
Peter Dorfner ...
Gerhard Vestner
Peter Tode
Heinz Koderer
HansGeorg Behr


Add Full Plot | Add Synopsis





Official Sites:



Release Date:

10 November 1970 (West Germany)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

The wonder of naïveté
28 July 2014 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Syberberg's preoccupations are to do with the intellectual and cultural traditions of Germany and the German intellectual and cultural response to the Second World War, and if that sounds interesting, or if you are interested in the revolutionary thinking that was happening in the world at the end of the sixties, and the aftermath, then San Domingo should be of interest.

San Domingo is about a young hippie called König who is the son of a super-rich couple, but has dropped out. He seems to be working in botanical gardens and then he goes out into the countryside and ends up on a biker / hippie / anarchist commune. The bikers convince a young woman called Carla to throw herself at him and preoccupy his time whilst they ask his parents for a large ransom without ever technically kidnapping him. König has a fixation with Africa as some sort of ideal land, although he has never been there. His love for Africa is like the painter Rousseau's, influenced by picture books and botanical gardens, the reality of things like famine (this film was shot at the end of the Nigerian famine and beginning of the Ethiopian one) and civil wars or wars of independence and their associated atrocities hardly impinge on his consciousness. Relatedly part of Carla's allure may be her black skin, although as König is naive and inexperienced, and she is extremely worldly, experienced and throwing herself at him, not much extra allure is needed. König's name is ironic (German for king), he has a kind of long aristocratic 17th century haircut and he very much has the Antoinette-ish "let them eat cake" deal going on: he sits in with Carla when she interviews with a personnel manager and argues about employment, trying to make the case that people should be able to do whatever they want, and that jobs should be created to manage for this.

Syberberg's reputation has taken a shoeing because I think he believes in a lot of the cultural values that others believe led to the rise of Nazism in Germany. I think other intellectuals felt that he was also self-aggrandising. That's all a bit quagmirish for me, I generally believe that political correctness has harmful aspects sometimes intensely harmful, but I don't know if characterising the reaction to his output as politically correct is fair, though initially it seems so. In any case San Domingo is some pretty nuanced stuff that leaves room for your own opinion. Syberberg was dismayed by the German intellectual response to the war, and I guess the youth response of doing or believing the exact opposite of their parents. So the movie reminded me of Gas-s-s-s from Roger Corman a bit in that it often is exposing that young hippie-ish folks have some aspects of their thinking that are 100% idiotic. However I think all the young folk in the movie have been let down in one way or the other, so I think there's balance and humanism. There's two old women in the movie that are an interesting contrast, one who won't give König and Carla a room unless they're married, and another who seems like a maid/cleaner/mother figure who let's everyone get on with what they are doing and seems to revel in their youth. I kinda had an image in my head of Dali's Soft Construction with Boiled Beans (Premonition of Civil War) when thinking about the creator of the movie, as if he had two different heartfelt responses to what was going on, that he couldn't really blame the youth for their new ideas, but he didn't agree that they were sensible, and on the other hand that for youth, revelling in ideas is an end in itself. So there's sort of a conflicted Pasolini-an agony in this work.

The film is a very loose adaptation of Kleist's Betrothal in St. Domingo, though it never felt anything other than fresh and modern. Much if not most of the film appears completely improvised, with the actors being non professionals (excepting König) and playing under their real names.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: