DOK Leipzig 29 October – 4 November 2018
61st International Leipzig Festival for Documentary and Animated Film
DOK Leipzig Film Festival

Rhinland. Fontane

Rhinland. Fontane

Bernhard Sallmann is working on a film project in several parts dedicated to Theodor Fontane and his “Ramblings through Brandenburg”. “Rhinland. Fontane” is the second part and follows “Oderland. Fontane”. The filmmaker’s interest is historic on the one hand, which emerges in the precise recital of passages from Fontane’s book “Die Grafschaft Ruppin” (Ruppin County): peat cutters’ working conditions, Prussian militarism, capitalist speculators, the author’s self-reflections or the drastic experience of the Thirty Years’ War. On the other hand, Sallman’s concept of a strict registry of places and landscapes in long, static shots with location sound is indebted only to the present day: long distance roads crisscross a marshy landscape; secluded lakes open up in the beech forest.

Another great rambler, Georg Forster, once reflected on his enthusiasm for the observation of the presence and underlying history of landscapes: “In the end one doesn’t have more than what falls through these two openings of the pupils to stimulate the vibrations of the brain. We have no other way of experiencing the world and its nature.” Experiencing the world and its nature is Sallmann’s intention, too.

Ralph Eue


Original Title: Rhinland. Fontane
Country: Germany
Year: 2017
Language: German
Subtitle: English
Runtime: 67 min.
Format: DCP
Color: Colour
Director: Bernhard Sallmann
Producer: Bernhard Sallmann
Cinematographer: Bernhard Sallmann
Editor: Christoph Krüger
Sound: Klaus Barm
Script: Bernhard Sallmann

The annotations to the films in the Official Selection were written by the members of the selection committee and guest authors. All quotes from DOK Leipzig 2018 catalogue articles must be identified as such and cite the author's name. All articles where no author’s name is given are production notes.