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

Commanders – Chairmen – General Secretaries 5

Commanders – Chairmen – General Secretaries 5

A programme driven by two impulses. On the one hand we follow Faulkner’s idea that the past is never dead, that it’s not even past. On the other hand we want to marshal Marx’s polemical thesis according to which in history everything occurs twice, the first time as tragedy, the second time as farce. Trump, for example, deliberately resorted to the visual rhetoric of Lenin posters in his campaign. Other contemporary autocrats, like Putin or Erdoğan, do not feel insulted by comparisons with Stalin.

“The opposite of totalitarianism is enlightenment”, Carl Hegemann wrote, long-serving dramatic adviser of the Berlin Volksbühne. However, this was in conflict with an apparently existential need for clear guidelines, leading figures and worldviews, for the emotional security of children who can blindly rely on their parents. And Hegemann concludes: “You need a big stick to neutralise this.” In this sense we trust in the neutralising power of Jay Rosenblatt’s “Scared Very Scared” and Milo Rau’s “The Moscow Trials”. We think they are big sticks indeed.

Ralph Eue


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.