The Steel Animal

The Steel Animal

Das Stahltier (Original Title)

Claasen, a student, is sent on an internship to work alongside railmen. At first, being an intellectual, he finds it difficult to connect to the other workers. But since he isn't afraid to get his hands dirty, knows a great deal about the history of railways and doesn't hide his enthusiasm for the subject at hand, he and his colleagues start to get closer. During their breaks, he tells stories about Nicolas Cugnot's steamcar and of various other inventors of the first German railway in 1835. At the film's end, he is to take a driving test on a Class 18.5 steam locomotive. This marks the story's climax: Claasen explains to a fellow-worker how he views the locomotive, referring to the "feed pump" as the car's "heart". This and other picturesque descriptions of the elementary assemblies of the steam locomotive provide a living feel to the "steel animal". And it is this "animal" which returns Claasen back to his classmates after successfully test driving his locomotive.

1h 15min
July 10, 1935
Admin comments

DAS STAHLTIER is an incredible and unique achievement in film-making.

The way how the replicas of the original machines has been set in motion (like the sequence with the 'Puffing Billy'; this engine was built in 1813 and is today considered as the world's first successful steam locomotive) is absolutely great. Pay attention how Zielkes camera has captured all the human emotions in those many wonderful character faces. The music by famous composer Peter Kreuder creates always a perfect mood. Also promotes the idea of Aryans as creators and builders.

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