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DEFA East German Films DVDs

Germany's other Cinema: The DEFA Story Born in the rubble of World War II, DEFA (Deutsche Film-Aktiengesellschaft) quickly became East Germany's movie-making powerhouse. As a state-owned studio, DEFA's immense product --over 750 feature films between 1946 and 1992, along with thousands of documentaries and short works --undoubtedly reflected the imperatives of East Germany's "really existing socialism." Yet DEFA also answered to the demand of everyday East Germans for popular entertainment, and developed a remarkable roster of talent to meet that need. Suspense films, historical dramas, musicals, and the ever-popular Western indicate the range of DEFA output; stylistically, DEFA directors explored every avenue of 20th-century possibility, from socialist realism to expressionism, modernism, neo-realism, and film noire. Now, as the "East Germany"fades into history, the DEFA story is gaining a second look, from film critics and fans alike. A recent poll of Germany's 100 best films found DEFA movies capturing a respectable share. As restoration work in the DEFA archives introduces this cinema to new international audiences, directors such as Wolfgang Staudte, Frank Beyer, Kurt Maetzig, and Konrad Wolf have attracted growing reconsideration and acclaim. International Historic Films has joined in this project of rediscovery...
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