Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2004/08/22

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Subject: [Leica] Leni Riefenstahl
From: mlpowell at (Matthew Powell)
Date: Sun Aug 22 18:53:24 2004
References: <> <>

As a preface, I'm neither a film scholar nor an Eisenstein/Riefenstahl 
scholar and wouldn't claim to be. A couple of film studies courses here 
and there, but that's it. -

We know a great deal of Eisenstein's feelings, as you can find a number 
of books of his writings on and a fair selection of 
biographies and criticism. He was a Leninist, but as far as I know, 
never a Stalinist.

A prime difference between Eisenstein and Riefenstahl is that she was 
gleefully complicit in the propagation of the Aryan image and the Nazi 
program, where Eisenstein faced a great deal of difficulty during the 
Stalinist era, and rebelled against the regime (cf. _Ivan the Terrible 
II_ and the destruction of what he had done on the third).

His earlier work, made in praise of the Revolution and his Communist 
ideals, can hardly be called analgous to Triumph of the Will. Potemkin 
makes ideological heroes of the peasants and the rebellious soldiers - 
not Lenin or the Party. Triumph of the Will doesn't make heroes of 
rebellious Germans or even average Germans, it was made specifically in 
adoration of the Aryan ubermensch and Hitler himself.

"And I am most unhappy with the media's spin on ideology.  (Religious 
nuts are hardly right-wing,
&c &c -- the Rightists advocate limited government and individual 
the Leftists scream for gummit programs limiting personal liberities and
reducing all citizens to a common state of servility to the 

Speaking of 'spin on ideology.'

Replies: Reply from kitmc at (Kit McChesney | Vuelux) ([Leica] Leni Riefenstahl)
Reply from mark at (Mark Rabiner) ([Leica] Leni Riefenstahl)
In reply to: Message from msmall at (Marc James Small) ([Leica] Shakleton Photos Faked)
Message from msmall at (Marc James Small) ([Leica] Leni Riefenstahl)