"Images from the late 1980s in East Germany to the immediate present, 2008, in Germany. What remains besieges my head. In it, all these images come together again as something different from what they were originally intended to be. They remain in motion. They become history." (Thomas Heise) The DVD set also offers rare early works by Thomas Heise, unique and authentic images of everyday's life in the GDR, immediately banned in the GDR.
Material - Germany 2009 - Directed and written by: Thomas Heise - Photographed by: Peter Badel, Sebastian Richter, Thomas Heise, Jutta Tränkle, Börres Weiffenbach - Edited by: René Frölke - Produced by: Ma.Ja.De. Filmproduktions GmbH, Leipzig - Premiere: February 12, 2009 (Internationales Forum des Jungen Films, Berlinale 2009)
Wozu denn über diese Leute einen Film? - GDR 1980 - Directed and written by: Thomas Heise - Photographed by: Dagmar Mundt - Edited by: Beate Sell - Music: Stefan Carow - Produced by: Hochschule für Film und Fernsehen, Babelsberg - Premiere: September 20, 1989 (Akademie der Künste, Berlin/DDR)
Das Haus / 1984 - GDR 1984 - Directed and written by: Thomas Heise - Photographed by: Peter Badel - Edited by: Gisela Tammert - Produced by: Staatliche Filmdokumentation at the Staatliches Filmarchiv der DDR, Berlin - Premiere: November 21, 2001 (Filmkunsthaus Babylon, Berlin)
Volkspolizei / 1985 - GDR 1985 - Directed and written by: Thomas Heise - Photographed by: Peter Badel - Edited by: Gisela Tammert - Produced by: Staatliche Filmdokumentation at the Staatliches Filmarchiv der DDR, Berlin - Premiere: November 21, 2001 (Filmkunsthaus Babylon, Berlin)
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. Outtakes 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.
DVD features (2-disc set)
- Material 2009, 166'
- 24-page trilingual booklet with an essay by Thomas Heise
- Wozu denn über diese Leute einen Film? 1980, 34'
- Das Haus / 1984 56'
- Volkspolizei / 1985 60'
Edited by: Filmmuseum München, Goethe-Institut and Dokumentarfilminitiative NW
DVD authoring: Ralph Schermbach
DVD supervision: Stefan Drössler
First edition June 2011