Triumph Of The Will

( 10 )

Overview

Synapse Films' DVD of the infamous Nazi propaganda film Triumph of the Will is an enlightening, majestic, horrifying, and ultimately historically important affair. Though it could have been made even more stellar with the inclusion of a commentary track by the film's director Leni Riefenstahl, it is understandable why she wouldn't want to do so. The dark legacy that this film has cast is still felt today. Yet directors such as George Lucas and Paul Verhoeven have respectfully appropriated imagery from this film ...
See more details below
DVD (Black & White / Dolby 5.1 / Mono)
$31.71
BN.com price
(Save 9%)$34.99 List Price
Other sellers (DVD)
  • All (7) from $6.71   
  • New (4) from $19.90   
  • Used (3) from $6.71   

Overview

Synapse Films' DVD of the infamous Nazi propaganda film Triumph of the Will is an enlightening, majestic, horrifying, and ultimately historically important affair. Though it could have been made even more stellar with the inclusion of a commentary track by the film's director Leni Riefenstahl, it is understandable why she wouldn't want to do so. The dark legacy that this film has cast is still felt today. Yet directors such as George Lucas and Paul Verhoeven have respectfully appropriated imagery from this film for their own uses (Star Wars and Starship Troopers, respectively). The print for this DVD obviously shows its age, but it nevertheless looks stupendous. Taken from a 35 mm fine-grain print, the picture is of high contrast and has been cleaned up as much as possible. It is the best that it has ever looked on video without a doubt. The disc does contain an informative and fascinating commentary track by historian Dr. Anthony R. Santoro. His comments are mostly a scene-by-scene analysis of what is occurring onscreen and of the various nefarious characters involved within the Nazi regime. Unfortunately, Santoro gives little information pertaining to Riefenstahl. The DVD has been windowboxed, which will give viewers more visual information, depending on how their televisions or monitors are calibrated. It is also in the original German language and subtitled into English. Riefenstahl's rarely seen short film Day of Freedom has also been included on the disc. An excellent and important DVD overall -- please note that the actual running time is 110 minutes, not 120 as stated on the keep-case cover.
Read More Show Less

Special Features

Short film: "Day of Freedom"; Audio Commentary; Liner Notes
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Dan Friedman
Many films which are considered to be landmarks of cinema often deal with subject matter so abhorrent to the modern viewer that it is difficult to get past the content to understand why they are truly remarkable pieces of work. D.W. Griffith's The Birth of a Nation, for instance, with its glorification of the Ku Klux Klan is the most well known of these films. However, whereas Griffith's film is lauded for creating the technical language for the full-length feature film, the template for the documentary, or at least a major one, is Triumph of the Will. There are those who will argue that the film is more Nazi propaganda than a historical document, and while it can't be denied that its purpose was to deify the greatest evil of the 20th century, it also can't be denied that from a simpler perspective it is a masterwork of cinematography and documentary filmmaking. That conclusion is frightening, but it serves to demonstrate how the medium of film can be used in the wrong hands. Though Leni Riefenstahl forever claimed that she was not a Nazi and was simply a director trying to make the best film possible, it's so easy to feel the adoration for Adolf Hitler that pours off the screen that her argument is hard to swallow. The main focus is the 1934 Nazi Party rally in Nuremburg, and the sheer spectacle of the event, along with the knowledge of the historical events that followed, is what gives the film its eerie power. The best version to watch, again from a purely cinematic view, is the non-subtitled edition. This is effective for two main reasons. First, if you are a non-German speaker, it allows you to focus on the images alone and avoid the propaganda that encompasses the speeches. Second, it prevents distractions from looking at the bottom of the screen for the translation. Many of the images, especially for 1934, are rather remarkable. Riefenstahl has almost inevitably become one of history's more intriguing figures based on her gender, her nationality, and her place in time. While arguments about her will rage on for many more years, one fact that can't be disputed is that she was talented. Another interesting film to be sought out is her documentary of the 1936 Berlin Olympics entitled Olympia.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/3/2001
  • UPC: 654930301593
  • Original Release: 1934
  • Rating:

  • Source: Synapse Films
  • Region Code: 1
  • Presentation: Black & White / Dolby 5.1 / Mono
  • Sound: Dolby Digital, monaural
  • Language: Deutsche
  • Time: 2:00:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 6,562

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Leni Riefenstahl
Adolf Hitler Participant
Martin Bormann Participant
Joseph Goebbels Participant
Hermann Göring Participant
Rudolf Hess Participant
Heinrich Himmler Participant
Technical Credits
Leni Riefenstahl Director, Screenwriter
Walter Ruttmann Screenwriter
Read More Show Less

Scene Index

Side #1 --
0. Chapter Selections
1. Overture [2:13]
2. Flying to Nuremberg [4:13]
3. Motorcade [4:37]
4. Night Rally [2:56]
5. Youth Encampment [6:10]
6. Farmer's March [2:08]
7. Labor Front Men [2:14]
8. Congress Hall of the N.S.D.A.P. [9:40]
9. Reich Labor Service Review [7:04]
10. Viktor Lutze [3:41]
11. Hitler Youth Rally [10:12]
12. Reichswehr Review [1:29]
13. Night Rally of Political Leaders [8:19]
14. SA and SS Review [:09]
15. Grand Review of N.S.D.A.P. [11:29]
16. Liebstandarte Bodyguards [15:56]
17. Closing Ceremonies [2:23]
18. N.S.D.A.P. Hymn [14:14]
Read More Show Less

Menu

Side #1 --
   Play Movie
   Special Features
      Play film with Audio Commentary
         Commentary Track On
         Commentary Track Off
      English Subtitles
         English Subtitles On
         English Subtitles Off
      Play DAY OF FREEDOM Tag der Freilheit
   Special Thanks
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 10 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(6)

4 Star

(1)

3 Star

(2)

2 Star

(1)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing 1 – 9 of 10 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Riefenstahl's perfect shame

    How does one rate a masterpiece created for the very worst of causes? Leni Riefenstahl was a great actress and director of what were called "mountain pictures" during the silent era of movie making. She uses in this film all the skills she had acquired to present Hitler as an Olympian savior of the German people. He of course turned out to be the cause of death for millions around the world. The movie is presented by it's director as a documentary of the Nuremberg rally of 1934 but the rally itself was staged and events repeated several times in order to create the kind of film that Hitler and Riefenstahl desired. The Triumph of the Will is more an example of the triumph of propaganda. It is essential viewing for those interested in World War 2 and for those interested in the history of advertising (i.e. propaganda).

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Ignore the out-dated cliches and corny remarks about this film and just enjoy it!

    Other reviews and endless, boring commentaries will tell you the history you probably already know about this film, so I will get on to the heart of the matter. In this beautifully conceived and executed piece of filmaking you will experience a phenomenom unknown to our own time: A people united, uplifted and bound together in a common enthusiasm for their future. Hopefulness, joy and beauty expressed and then captured on film. It is sentimental, it remembers the dead of the great world war and it exhalts at the resurrection. The sometimes moving, sometimes stirring musical score is artfully set to a variety of expressive visuals, from spontaneous crowds of the every-man to choreography and movement of the camera, all created and assembled to give you a unique experience to linger with. The speeches by various dignitaries and officials may be sat through with curiosity, perhaps even patience, as we here today will have to focus a little harder to understand them and what each is talking about. Forget the hopeless, corny propaganda which insists this film is propaganda. Simply enjoy, for a moment, what we have not had since that time, in the post-war world of the west. We search and are anxious for such a union of happy, enthusiastic people, elusive for many of us today. You will enjoy the experience this film brings to you, whoever you are, wherever you are, for this was its intention, and it will succeed.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    She wrote the book on propaganda films

    This morning, on a radio news program, I heard a woman being interviewed about the president's arrival at a campaign rally. 'It was so thrilling', she said, 'to hear the helicopters, and then see him come down from the sky like that'. Sounds like Bush & Co. have been learning the lesson that Leni taught us, film, when artfully manipulated is the most potent propaganda tool on the planet. Especially when you consider the mortal descending from the sky, to be greeted by cheering crowds is identical to the way this film opens. Triumph of the Will, knowing what we know now, is not any easy film to watch, however when at age 70 it is still the premiere example of its genre, it is a must see for students not only of cinema, but also psychology, propaganda, and apparently presidential campaigns.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A Mastery In Propaganda and Film Techniques

    Riefenstahl's documentary made for Adolf Hitler and the NAZI party's 1934 Nuremburg rally. The documentary primarily covers the Nuremburg rally and the activities that surrounded the event. Again, this is a propaganda film and was designed to stir popular sentiment and political empathy for the infamous political party. If one understands the socio-political climate of Germany in the late 1920s and early 1930s, one can clearly see what sentiments the film seeks to evoke and hence recognize its significance and brilliant execution. For example, Germany was in a state of shambles because of the global economic depression and many Germans feared an inevitable collapse to anarchy or Bolshevism. The opening scene starts with a Wagnerian piece and shows Hitler in a plane peering down from high above the clouds as he arrives for the rally. The scene sought to reassure a worried public that The Fuhrer was omnipotent, omniscient, and was coming down from the heavens to save a troubled nation in a godlike fashion. When he arrives at the stadium, Hitler is shown walking with his SA escort out of the crowd and towards the podium instead from behind the podium to look down at the crowd; this was to instill the notion that Hitler wasn't just another Berlin bureaucrat from the old failed Weimar Republic coming to talk down to a broken people; it was done to evoke the sense that he was a man of the people for the people: selflessly arising out of a worried crowd of fellow Germans to lead them to a better and safer future. Other scenes of happy German blonde and blue-eyed youths or common laborers performing paramilitary/social tasks were intended to evoke a proud sense of unity, purpose, and safety amongst all true German 'volk' in these troubled times. In the background, the narrative voice recites how all German women should embrace the duty of childrearing for the Fatherland; how men should unite and withstand deprivations for the Fatherland; how youths should be prepared to endure hardship and learn perseverance; etc., etc. Riefenstahl's film techniques such as wide panoramic shots and multi-angle views are so influential to film that they have implemented by famous movie directors such as Stanley Kubrick and George Lucas. The mass communication techniques devised by Riefenstahl and Goebbels are still used today by virtually every modern government and media firm. This film is important not only as a histiorical tool in understanding the rise of Nazism and the dynamics of facism, it is a very important landmark in the development of film, mass entertainment and mass communication in general. I strongly believe that every person who seeks to better understand their world and the media see this film at least once and study it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Propaganda at its Finest - An exemplifies the true meaning of the word

    This documentary of the 1934 National Socialist party rally in Nürnberg is the best propaganda peice of all time. Leni Riefenstahl has captured the Hitler and his party in truly its most powerful political phase. She successfully depicts Hitler as a demigouge, and creates around him an ora of power and control. Hitler's wonderful orations are captivating to say the least. It is almost impossible for one not to be at awe by his oration. He captivates his audience and grabs their full attention. He controls the crowd - and Riefenstahl takes full advantage of this. It gives the viewer a true portrait of evil, and at the same time captivates them. It is easy to see why so many Germans fell under the power of Hitler. He had charisma, and he used this to bring evil and horror throughout Germany and Europe. The documentary is a must for anyone interested in history or politics.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Truly propaganda at its best

    Good to see once. What I take from this film, besides what it was actually made for, is seeing all those people, or "those poor misled children" as Hitler put it, thousands and thousands, couldnt figure out that this guy was such a mess. This film was even today, a little scary. This might be a good film to show in a history class to show all children the face of hate and deceit. See movies below to for direct results of this maniacs fine work.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 19, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted June 4, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted February 27, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing 1 – 9 of 10 Customer Reviews