Barossa Film Club’s last showing, “Taking Sides” received one of our highest ratings for the year, 4.3 out of 5. And no wonder! Istvan Szabo’s film caused us all to stop and listen and think, and that is something rare in films. Harvey Keitel has been accused of being over the top, but in this appearance his rage and desire for vengeance defines his character, and explains much of what often appears to be his boorish behavior. Initially, Stellan Skarsgard’s humbled maestro attracts our sympathy for what appears to unjustified persecution, but the reveleations gradually lessen our sympathy. All in all, the audience was left talking and discussing the film – and that is the sign of a succesful work.
This is a comparatively recent British film, released in 2003. Directed by Istvan Szabo, it stars Harvey Keitel and Stellan Skarsgard. Based on a true story, Skarsgard plays German Jewish conductor Wilhelm Furtwangler, who stayed in Germany during the Second World War, rather than fleeing the Nazis like most Jewish musicians. Not only did he stay, but he played for Hitler’s birthday and a Nazi rally, and his recording of Bruckner’s 7th Symphony was played after Hitler’s death. Keitel plays Major Steve Arnold who investigates and prosecutes Furtwangler at the U.S denazification trials after the War.
This is an acclaimed film and raises some interesting questions about the morality of Jewish behaviour during the Nazi era – but also the behaviour of the Allies in their quest for revenge after the War.
This is the Film Club’s second-last film for the year before the Christmas break. Screened at the Faith College wine centre. the programme will commence with Australian short film “Fade” at 7.30, then the main feature after a break for coffee and cake.
The Film Club Committee has drawn up a tentative list of films which will be shown in 2012. We will be interested to hear your comments on what sort of films you would like to see, and any films that you think are important and worth general viewing. Let us know by contacting us either personally at showings or at the addresses on the “Contacts” page.