The most remarkable discovery in recent German-language cinema: Gerhard Friedl’s first feature is a hypnotic visual puzzle at the interface of documentary, essay film and pulp fiction. On the soundtrack: an unflinchingly ‘objective’ account of the labyrinthine genealogies, criminal involvements and afflictions of Germany’s economic leaders in the 20th century. On the screen: pans and tracking shots through European financial centres, production sites and landscapes. The sheer depth and crispness of these images is a treat in itself; a transformation into cinégénie of what artists like Candida Höfer or Jeff Wall have done by means of still photography. At times, image and sound are aligned, at others they just miss each other. They invariably suggest correlations. Paranoia? Irony? Can the prosaic, criminal state of affairs of a modern economy be depicted at all? Pierre Rissient, the French film historian, puts the film where it belongs: “Fritz Lang would have loved it!”
Leaves you reeling with its impossibly mazy mesh of the criminal swindlings & liens of the robber barons of German industry; the visual track is a ceaseless assault of Modern Life which wrt the soundtrack is by turns ironic, deadpan or irrelevant.There is no solid anchor & by the end all the swirling produces a sort of metaphysical seasickness. Seems closer to a postmodern Fritz Lang than any 'documentary' I've seen!
there is insanity here. either from the director, the narrator, the economic history of germany, or some contorted conjunction of the three. so it's quite quite real. http://cinema-scope.com/cinema-scope-magazine/deaths-of-cinema-the-vanishing-in-memoriam-gerhard-benedikt-friedl/
"It’s impossible to keep track of the tangled mass of detail, especially as the speaker refuses to emphasize the most upsetting events, while supposedly ephemeral data, like the industrialists’ wacky spleens, bleed into one long, unsettling insinuation. Terror, irony, and incredulity become inseparable: Even more than its predecessor, Amerongen is a horror comedy in which absurd paranoia is inscribed on the visible world through torrents of verbiage."