Der Sieg des Glaubens (English: The Victory of Faith, Victory of Faith, or Victory of the Faith) (1933) is the first propaganda film directed by Leni Riefenstahl. Her film recounts the ...
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This Nazi propaganda film purports to show the story of a Nazi Storm Trooper named Horst Wessel--here called "Hans Westmar"--who took part in street brawls and assassinations in Berlin in ... See full summary »
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Charles de Gaulle
Der Sieg des Glaubens (English: The Victory of Faith, Victory of Faith, or Victory of the Faith) (1933) is the first propaganda film directed by Leni Riefenstahl. Her film recounts the Fifth Party Rally of the Nazi Party, which occurred in Nuremberg from 30 August to 3 September 1933. The film is of great historic interest because it shows Adolf Hitler and Ernst Röhm on close and intimate terms, before Röhm was shot on the orders of Hitler on the Night of the Long Knives in July 1934. All known copies of the film were destroyed on Hitler's orders, and it was considered lost until a copy turned up in the 1990s in the United KingdomWritten by
Director Leni Riefenstahl was visiting Great Britain in April 1934, to speak at major universities to discuss her documentary film techniques. It is during this visit that at least one copy of this film is known to have been duplicated. It was found after being in storage for over 60 years, and is the only known surviving print. The opening credits appear to have been shot off of a screen projection, but the remainder of the footage appears to be a direct copy of a print. See more »
One gets a sense of déjà vu all the way through this trial run for 'Triumph des Willens', as so many of its images were deliberately recreated by Leni Riefenstahl a year later for the more famous film, which also reuses Herbert Windt's music; although sadly there is no zeppelin in 'Triumph des Willens'.
In addition to being almost exactly half the running time of the interminable 'Triumph', it's the mismatches and the occasional moments of spontaneity that makes 'Der Sieg des Glaubens' the more endurable of the two films. The presence throughout of Ernst Röhm is naturally the most remarkable feature; usually at Hitler's side but otherwise not unduly prominent (the film overall contains mercifully far less speeches - and marching - although there do seem to be more rather more shots of Goebbels this time round). After years of being accustomed to seeing the aerial view of the threesome of Hitler, Himmler and Lutze (Röhm's tame replacement as head of the SA) approaching the Ehrenhalle in 'Triumph', the sight of just Hitler and Röhm giving the salute comes as a jolt. The presence of Vice-Chancellor Papen (soon to be sidelined by the Führer until collared by the Allies in 1945 and brought back to Nuremberg as one of the defendants) reminds us that this is still very early days for the New Order, and Riefenstahl occasionally cuts to a suitably overwhelmed looking Italian delegation.
Two amusing moments depicting the Führer caught slightly off-guard are early on when he immediately thrusts a bouquet of flowers two little girls have just presented to him in Rudolf Hess's direction; and the unaccustomed slouching posture he adopts while the leader of the Hitler Youth, Baldur von Schirach, attempts to quieten them down so that he can begin his address.
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