Alexander Kluge

Director, Screenwriter, Producer
Kluge is the "godfather" of New German Cinema. As one of the originators (some say the driving force) of the 1962 Oberhausen Manifesto, Kluge urged young filmmakers to rebel against the moribund German film ... Read more »
Born: 02/14/1932 in Germany

Filmography

other (60)

The Night of the Film-Makers 1994 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Deutschland im Herbst 1993 (Movie)

(Production Supervisor)

Deutschland im Herbst 1993 (Movie)

(prologue/episodes 2,3,10,12,13, 15,16) (Director)

Vermischte Nachrichten 1985 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Vermischte Nachrichten 1985 (Movie)

(Producer)

Vermischte Nachrichten 1985 (Movie)

(Director)

Die Macht der Gefuehle 1982 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Die Macht der Gefuehle 1982 (Movie)

(Director)

Die Macht der Gefuehle 1982 (Movie)

Narration (Narrator)

Die Macht der Gefuehle 1982 (Movie)

(Producer)

Krieg und Frieden 1981 (Movie)

conception (Other)

Krieg und Frieden 1981 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Krieg und Frieden 1981 (Movie)

("Vom Standpunkt der Infanterie") (Director)

Krieg und Frieden 1981 (Movie)

Narration (Narrator)

Der Kandidat 1979 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Der Kandidat 1979 (Movie)

(Director)

Die Patriotin 1978 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Die Patriotin 1978 (Movie)

(Producer)

Die Patriotin 1978 (Movie)

(Director)

Die Patriotin 1978 (Movie)

Narration (Narrator)

Nachrichten von der Staufern 1976 (Movie)

(Director)

Nachrichten von der Staufern 1976 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Der Starke Ferdinand 1975 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Der Starke Ferdinand 1975 (Movie)

(Director)

Der Starke Ferdinand 1975 (Movie)

Narration (Narrator)

In Gefahr Groesster Not Bringt der Mittelweg den Tod 1974 (Movie)

art direction (Art Director)

Gelegenheitsarbeit einer Sklavin 1973 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Gelegenheitsarbeit einer Sklavin 1973 (Movie)

(Director)

Besitzburgerin, Jahrgang 1908 1972 (Movie)

(Director)

Besitzburgerin, Jahrgang 1908 1972 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Die Reise nach Wien 1972 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Der Grosse Verhau 1970 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Der Grosse Verhau 1970 (Movie)

(Director)

Der Grosse Verhau 1970 (Movie)

(Producer)

Ein Arzt aus Halberstadt 1969 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Ein Arzt aus Halberstadt 1969 (Movie)

(Director)

Artists Under the Big Top: Perplexed 1967 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Artists Under the Big Top: Perplexed 1967 (Movie)

(Director)

Artists Under the Big Top: Perplexed 1967 (Movie)

Narration (Narrator)

Lust for Love 1966 (Movie)

(art) (Technical Advisor)

Yesterday Girl 1965 (Movie)

("Attendance List For a Funeral") (From Story)

Yesterday Girl 1965 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Yesterday Girl 1965 (Movie)

(Producer)

Yesterday Girl 1965 (Movie)

(Director)

Yesterday Girl 1965 (Movie)

Narration (Narrator)

Biography

Kluge is the "godfather" of New German Cinema. As one of the originators (some say the driving force) of the 1962 Oberhausen Manifesto, Kluge urged young filmmakers to rebel against the moribund German film establishment. Originally trained as a lawyer, he has written widely about aesthetic theory, film and economics, and as head of the Institut fur Filmgestaltung in Ulm, he shaped the talents and consciousness of Wim Wenders and Edgar Reitz, among others. His own films, marked by an acerbic wit, satirize political incongruities through avant-garde editing and narrative techniques.

Kluge's first feature, "Abschied von Gestern/Yesterday Girl" (1966), took eight prizes at the 1966 Venice Film Festival, alerting the world of the imminent revival of the German cinema. The film observes the forces that shape Anita G., a larcenous young lady who's unlucky in love. Many of Kluge's most amusing characters are women facing a repressive sexist society, as with "Gelegenheitsarbeit einer sklavin/Occasional Work of a Female Slave" (1974), in which a girl sells sausages wrapped in political manifestos to workers. Kluge's films often stress the continuum between Germany's past and its present, illustrating the pitfalls of its abiding twin obsessions: materialism and militarism.

Kluge's films are not easily understood by American audiences, even though they often deal with Germany's dependency on America, such as in "Willi Tobler and the Decline of the Sixth Fleet" (1970). His exceedingly specific political satire can parody Marxism as well as capitalism but mystifies most viewers.

In Kluge's view, institutions retreat into their own authority until they cease to serve the purposes for which they were created. His outrage extends even to those who tolerate mediocrity and reinforce it from the bastions of their own institutional allegiances, as in "The Patriot" (1979) and "The Candidate" (1980).

"Society does not serve human beings' needs," Kluge has stated, "but it is so nonaggressive that it does not stimulate a direct struggle." Thus, his villains are as ineffective as his heroes: for example, Ferdinand, the fascistic boob in "Strongman Ferdinand" (1976). Kluge believes that by observing absurdity, human consciousness will aspire to rise above it, and to that end, his films have become increasingly absurdist, in a way that is not, however, inconsistent with German history. He has said, "I create historical characters in an ahistorical society."

Relationships

Alexandra Kluge

Sister
starred in Kluge films "Yester Day Girl" (1966) and "Occasional Work of a Female Slave" (1974)

EDUCATION

University of Frankfurt

University of Marburg

University of Freiburg

Milestones

1963

Formed Kairos-Film production company

1962

Appointed head of the Institute fur Film Gestaltung, Ulm, FDR

1962

Signed Oberhausen Manifesto

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