The Life and Work of Leni Riefenstahl

Book - 2007 | 1st ed.
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The definitive biography of Leni Riefenstahl, the woman best known as "Hitler's filmmaker," one of the most fascinating and controversial personalities of the twentieth century. It is the story of huge talent and huger ambition, one that probes the sometimes blurred borders dividing art and beauty from truth and humanity. Two of Riefenstahl's films,OlympiaandTriumph of the Will, are universally regarded as the greatest and most innovative documentaries ever made, but they are also insidious glorifications of Adolf Hitler and the Third Reich. Now, in this masterful new biography, Steven Bach reveals the truths and lies behind this gifted woman's lifelong self-vindication as an apolitical artist who claimed she knew nothing of the Holocaust and denied her complicity with the criminal regime she both used and sanctified. The facts and her actions, many unknown until now, bear chilling witness: her passionate enthusiasm for Hitler from her first reading ofMein Kampf; her involvements with Nazi leaders Joseph Goebbels, Martin Bormann, Albert Speer, and Julius Streicher, who advanced her career, and with Hitler, who personally helped finance it; her role as silent eyewitness to wartime atrocities against Jews; and her use of slave labor in the form of concentration camp Gypsies destined for Auschwitz. We see her after the war trying to sell footage to Hollywood under an alias, manipulating a sham "discovery" of the Nuba tribes of Sudan into a career comeback, fighting to disinherit her closest living relatives, and--to the end--unable to express remorse for the millions murdered by the Nazi regime made mythic by her work. Relying on new sources--including interviews with her colleagues and intimate friends, as well as on previously unknown recordings of Riefenstahl herself--Bach gives us an exceptional work of historical investigation that untangles the past and is also an objective but unsparing appraisal of a woman of spectacular gifts corrupted by ruthless personal ambition.
Publisher: New York : A.A. Knopf, 2007.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9780375404009
Branch Call Number: 791.430233092 R553b
Characteristics: 386 p. : ill., ports.


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Mar 22, 2019

Germany-born, Leni Riefenstahl earned her claim to fame for being Adolf Hitler's chosen filmmaker.

Two of Leni's most famous film projects for the Nazi cause were "Olympia" and "Triumph Of The Will" which are both quite remarkable productions in their own right regardless of them being commissioned through funding from the leader of the Third Reich.

If you are at all curios about finding out what Leni Riefenstahl's life was like before, during, and after WW2 and her association with Hitler - Then - This first-rate historical biography by Steven Bach is sure to be of some significant interest to you.

Feb 27, 2019

This well-researched biography, written by American university professor, Steven Bach, takes an in-depth look at the life and times of Leni Riefenstahl, who (as a Nazi collaborator) was best known for being "Hitler's" filmmaker.

If nothing else - This woman was quite a remarkable film director as is clearly evident from her 2 famous films, "Olympia" and "Triumph Of The Will", which are both widely regarded as being the greatest and most innovative documentaries ever made (but they are also viewed as an insidious glorification of Adolf Hitler and the Third Reich, as well).

This compelling biography (that often boasts of relying on new sources) creates an impressive historical investigation for the inquisitive reader that untangles the dark past of a woman of exceptional gifts who was blindly and professionally corrupted by ruthless personal ambitions.

This book also includes 32 pages of b&w photos, as well.

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