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The 26th edition of FESTROIA: TROIA INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL will be held from June 4 to 13 in the beautiful coastal resort town of Setubal, Portugal. The Festival, the country's oldest and most prestigious, is known as the "Cannes of Portugal" and showcases international talents from around the world, with competition sections, special events and a program  of new works from emerging North American independent filmmakers from the U.S.A.


Rediscovering German Cinema Classics

Wednesday, June 6------Film festivals are all about discovery......of newly emerging filmmakers or the latest films from acknowledged film masters. However, the best festivals also take a look backward, to celebrate the accomplishments of cinema giants long since past, and through this showcase bring to light "lost" films for a new generation of film lovers. Such is the case with Festroia's program of ten classic German feature films, a collaboration between the Festival and the Goethe Institut, an association whose aim is to promote the German language and culture outside Germany.

The movies featured include several classics and some "lost" films of the 1930s and 1940s. Probably the best known are THE BLUE ANGEL (1930), the first German film with sound, which introduced the sultry siren Marlene Dietrich, as an amoral cabaret singer who corrupts a highly moral professor (played by the great Emil Jannings); and M--MURDERERS AMONG US (1931), a classic early sound thriller by Fritz Lang, with an unforgettable performance by Peter Lorre.

Lesser known films make up most of the program, including the German western (?) THE EMPEROR OF CALIFORNIA (1936) by Luis TrenkerLA HABANERA (1937), an early film of auteur Douglas Sirk, who later became a leading director in Hollywood; and three comedies that still hold up very well: THREE MEN AND LILIAN (1930, Wilhelm Thiele), THE CONGRESS DANCES (1931, Erik Charell), AMPHITRYON: HAPPINESS FROM THE CLOUD (1935), based on the plays of Moliere, Plautus and Kleist; and THE MERRY HEIRS (1933), an early film of film giant Max Ophuls.

Two films made under the Nazi regime that are powerful in their own right are THE ADVENTURES OF BARON MUNCHHAUSEN (1943), by director Josef van Baky; and TITANIC (1943), a recreation of the famous ocean liner tragedy, completed by Werner Klinger after director Herbert Selpin was arrested by the Gestapo during the production of the movie and was found hung in his cell the following day. Rewarding films ripe for rediscovery and reappraisal.

Sandy Mandelberger, Festival Online Dailies Editor

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Sandy Mandelberger
(International Media Resources)

United States

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