German Expressionism in Film

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorCollege, Undergraduate February 2008

download word file, 10 pages 3.0

Bullet etched buildings covered with mismatched checkered plaster and paint jobs are starting to become more prevalent then the original war vandalized structures. This same covering up that is occurring in Berlin is the same covering up which is hiding the evidence of German expressionism in film. In simplest terms German expressionism was created by World War 1 and was ended by World War 2. To also be concise on the definition of what German expressionism is, mind you it doesn?t work in all cases, it can be said that it attempts to ?re-approriate an alienated universe by transforming it into a private, personal vision.? So where exactly did it start, where did it go, who was part of it and why did it have such an influence on cinema.

On a recent trip to see the influences and grounds of its creation it was slightly devastating to not only find any evidence of it but on its own soil to see that even German film students no longer acknowledge its impact in there work or at least acknowledge its influence.

After a while of thinking about all of this realizing the only thing that can be logical evidence is architecture, this statement came up to mind, ?its like coming to America trying to look for the wild west, time erased it for it only served its purpose when it was needed.? So what is German Expressionistic cinema and where did it start.

The questions of who started it and where did it begin can be argued to death but there are some key points which are agreed upon by most historians and critics. The French filmmaker and former magician, Melies was and is still quoted as the first horror film director. His filmmaking career went from about 1902 to...