Moved by the sound. The cinema and Ludwig van Beethoven
A commemorative year under the sign of Ludwig van Beethoven on the occasion of his 250th birthday - what is cinema doing there? Wasn't it the film that sold off his work, destroyed the "Moonlight Sonata" and the first movement of the 5th Symphony through permanent repetition?
At the latest since the 100th anniversary of his death, for which an elaborate silent film biopic with Fritz Kortner in the leading role was created, Beethoven's anniversaries seem unable to get by without the cinema, just as conversely the film is unable to shake off its dubious relationship with Beethoven's music.
The film historical passage leads to well-known auteur films and forgotten curiosities; it alternates between feature, documentary and experimental film and takes into account the concert film which was never taken quite so seriously. The films seem like interpretations of his compositions, some of them reminding us of Samuel Fuller's dictum: "Beethoven draws me into the imaginary through his sense of timing. The film director becomes a listener who translates his impressions and fantasies into moving images.
Biopics are fond of plunging into the prominent stages of the musician's biography: the dedication to the enigmatic "immortal lover", the relationship with Giulietta Guicciardi and Therese Brunsvik, the deafness, the tormented housekeepers, Beethoven's crushing love for his nephew Karl ...
The cinema deals with the composer's legacy in a much more independent and radical way than literature and musicology sometimes do. Instead of freezing with respect, they let themselves be moved by the music. We invite you to a completely new astonishment about the Beethoven cosmos. The retrospective curated by Stephan Ahrens is a project within the framework of "Beethoven 2020", supported by the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and Media. To accompany the film series, Bertz + Fischer Verlag is publishing the anthology of the same name Vom Klang bewegt.