Helke Sander/Harun Farocki - Break the Power of the Manipulators (1967/68)
Friday, November 23, 2007
"If you think about things, you become radicalized” (Helke Sander)
Break the Power of the Manipulators is a collaborative effort of among others Harun Farocki and acclaimed feminist filmmaker Helke Sander.
The film was produced for finnish television in 67/68. It not only documents but also reflects on the campaign of the german new left against the german publishing house Springer which still publishes the most powerful german right-wing tabloid Bild (think of the murdoch press) and which in the heated sixties and seventies tried to instigate public opinion against the student movement. The movie tries to illustrate the media power of Springer (which today has also a huge share in the east european newspaper market, e.g. it also owns the biggest tabloid in poland) and to analyze its influence on the german society while documenting
the measures that the student movement takes against Springer.
The film can be described as an early Outfoxed and shares the analytic and experimental but also fomenting spirit of Farocki's Inextinguishable Fire. Though the film was produced some decades ago its criticism and subject (Springer) are not entirely obsolete.
If you like the political films of Godard or Chris Marker from the mid 60s to mid 70s, Farocki's earlier efforts, the spirit of Alexander Kluges films or are interested in media criticism this film may interest you.
It may also serve as an introduction to the work of Helke Sander who is a prolific female german film auteur.
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