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Essential viewing for both those familiar and unfamiliar with the subject

Author: jrd_73 from United States
24 May 2016

While re-watching episode three, "The Unchained Camera," I fell in love with Cinema Europe all over again. While I do not have a strong grasp of Scandinavian silent cinema, I know German silent cinema well. I have read sections from Lottie Eisner's The Haunted Screen. Nosferatu is one of my favorite horror films (from any period), and I will forever adore Louise Brooks because of the films she made with G.W. Pabst. Yet, in spite of all that, I was still surprised by this episode.

"The Unchained Camera" taught me about history. I did not know that the British continued its blockade against Germany for a year after World War One ended. I did not know that censorship was so relaxed that Germany could make films about drug addiction (Opium) and homosexuality (Different from Others). The episode also reminded me of how much I have not seen. I watch a lot of different kinds of movies (as I am re-watching the Cinema Europe series, I am also re-watching Something Weird Video's Dusk To Dawn Drive-In Trailer Trashorama Show series). Cinema Europe reminded me of Robert Wiene's adaptation of Crime and Punishment, of Variety, of The White Hell of Pizu Palo, of The Joyless Street, all films I have occasionally thought about watching over the years, but somehow never got around to.

The other reviewer mentioned how "The Unchained Camera" gave away the endings of some of these classics. Normally, I would agree, but the episode uses the ending of Cabinet of Dr. Caligari to good effect. The episode is not giving away the ending just to give away the ending. I would recommend this episode to anyone.

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While not perfect, it's a wonderful overview of what was the best film production company in Europe.

Author: planktonrules from Bradenton, Florida
20 August 2011

This show contains spoilers--not my review. Although I loved this episode of "Cinema Europe", my oldest daughter was made because the film makers spoiled several films. In other words, they told the endings of some of great films of German cinema! So, if you haven't seen "The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari" or "The Last Laugh", for examples, you should NOT watch the documentary unless you have no intention of ever watching the films. This is rather unforgivable--and unnecessary. So, even though I enjoyed this episode the most, I can't help but take away a point because of this.

Despite this serious problem, there were two things I adored about this episode about German films. First, the choices of films were excellent and many, many examples were given. While I had seen almost all of them, any NORMAL person who hasn't reviewed over 10000 films will not have! Second, I particularly loved how the show showed many of the wonderful film tricks the Germans created--showing exactly how they did this. Seeing models and mirrors used to create these effects blew me away--and I was very excited to see this.

A super-important episode about the powerhouse film producing country--see this one--unless you DON'T want to know how so many films ended!

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