Melody of a Great City

Melody of a Great City


The film is about Renate Heiberg (Hilde Krahl) as a photographer in provincial Bavaria, who gets the chance to sell some photos to a major magazine and decides to move to Berlin. Here her dreams are first crushed; she loses her first job immediately by doing semi-artistic snaps instead of the sport press coverage that was demanded and toils away in the big city only supported by a photographer friend (Karl John). Then, however, her sport photos are dug out and she gets an offer to work for the big guns in the business, among them a journalist (Werner Hinz) she has fallen in love with.

This film is especially noteworthy for its portrayal of the Reichshauptstadt in all its glory. Only six weeks after the film's premiere, Berlin experienced the first of its heavy bombing raids, which were to continue regularly until War's end.

1h 47min
October 4, 1943
Admin comments

This movie is about woman empowerment, independence and freedom of choice. Way ahead of its time. Apparently, Nazis believed that an Aryan woman, independently, should be able to choose her career and the way she wants to live. But, the encouraged goal is to get married and have children. On a grand scale this movie depicts the projected bright vision of the future for the German nation. One of the best films of the 40's, with a strong modern female protagonist, a realistic description of people trying to find their way in a metropolis, some humor and a very modern sounding description of a romance between people who are separated by their work.

Throughout the film there's a lot of Berlin footage interspersed, which comes from Leo de Laforgue's documentary Berlin Symphonie einer Weltstadt (which was shot in 1938-39 but not released in 1943 as planned, due to the destruction by the Allied bombardments and the film having its premiere only in 1950).

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