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A montage of film material that dates back to the German Democratic Republic of the late 1980s and stretches to the present, the year 2008. Footage shot by Thomas Heise himself or taken at locations where he filmed, but never published. Out-takes that remained: Scenes at the theater during Fritz Marquardt's production of Heiner Müller's "Germania Tod in Berlin", the eviction of squatters from houses on Mainzer Straße, the mass demonstration at Alexanderplatz in November 1989, a residents' meeting in Hessenwinkel in Berlin, a session of the newly elected People's Parliament (the former East German parliament), scenes from inside Brandenburg prison, youths from the far-left scene staging an attack at a film screening, scenes from the demolition of the Palast der Republik. All testimony to a none-too-distant past. German history.

There's always something left over, bits and pieces that don't fit in. Notes, traces, fragments, chunks. Rather than assembling his material into a historical panorama Thomas Heise literally opens up a Zeit-Raum, a time-space, a resonating body in which sentences, images, stories and memories can reverberate. The soundtrack by Charles Ives does the rest. This is archaeology of the possible – and not least, an elegy to the past.

Birgit Kohler

Production: ma.ja.de Filmproduktion, Leipzig; Thomas Heise; ZDF/ARTE

Screenplay: Thomas Heise

Camera: Peter Badel, Sebastian Richter u. a.

Format: HDCam (filmed on 35mm, 16mm, Super8, Video/DV and others), Black&White and Color

Running Time: 166 min.

Language: German

Funded by:

  • Logo Minister of State for Culture and the Media
  • Logo des Programms NeuStart Kultur