News From Ideological Antiquity: Marx – Eisenstein – The Kapital

The film-essay by Alexander Kluge, dedicated to the ambitious unrealized project of Sergei Eisenstein - the film adaptation of «Capital» by Karl Marx.

The screening will be followed by discussion with film historian Oksana Bulgakowa and political theorist Ilya Budraitskis.

News From Ideological Antiquity: Marx – Eisenstein – The Kapital

Germany | 2008 | 83 min
On 12 October 1927 Sergej Eisenstein, who has just finished filming OCTOBER and is sitting on 60,000 meters of exposed material, notes in his diary: «The decision has been made to make a film of THE CAPITAL of Karl Marx». Eisenstein never got to carry out this plan; 81 years later Alexander Kluge set a monument to this project. He is being supported by Oksana Bulgakowa, Tom Tykwer, Hans Magnus Enzensberger, and many others. There will be shown a shortened version of the film with the length of 86 minutes at our festival.

Alexander Kluge

Born in the town of Halberstadt in 1932, Alexander Kluge is one of the leading intellectual voices in Germany today. His research and practice revolves around film, literature, social theory, film theory, television programs, and political action on various cultural fronts. In 1960 Kluge co-directed his first short film with Peter Schamoni entitled Brutalität in Stein (Brutality in Stone), becoming one of twenty-six signatories to the Oberhausen Manifesto of 1962, which marks the launch of the New German Cinema. His first feature film Abschied von Gestern (Yesterday Girl) wins the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival in 1966. In 1987, Kluge founds the television production company Development Company for Television Program (DCTP), which produces late-night and night-time independent television programs, which employ a diverse variety of image and sound fragments intended to give the television viewer a multi-sensory and multi-dimensional experience. In 2008 Kluge presents the almost nine hours of Nachrichten aus der ideologischen Antike: Marx/Eisenstein/Das Kapital (News from Ideological Antiquity: Marx/Eisenstein/Capital) a reinvention of Eisenstein's unfinished project of filming Capital by Karl Marx, and one of the most complex and monumental films of recent film history. This year he was invited to the 75th Mostra Internazionale d'Arte Cinematografica in Venice with his new feature film HAPPY LAMENTO.


After the show there will be a discussion with film historian Oksana Bulgakowa, who took part in the film, and political theorist Ilya Budraitskis. We hope to talk about the very possibility of Karl Marx's fundamental work being represented on screen, starting with Eisenstein's project, moving towards the already existed version in the format of an essay film by Kluge, and then to potential projects in the future.

Oksana Bulgakowa

Professor of Film Studies at the Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz. She published several books on Russian and German cinema (Sergei Eisenstein: Three Utopias. Architectural drafts for a Film Theory, 1996; FEKS - The Factory of Eccentric Actors, 1997; The Adventures of Doctor Mabuse in the Country of Bolsheviks, 1995; The White Rectangle. Kazimir Malevitch on Film, 1997 (English Edition 2002); Sergej Eisenstein. A Biography. German Edition 1998; English edition 2003, Russian edition 2017; Factory of Gestures, Moscow 2005; Soviet Hearing Eye: Film and its Senses, Moscow 2010; Resonance-Space: The Voice and The Media, Berlin, 2012; Voice as the cultural Phenomenon, Moscow 2015), directed films (Stalin – a Mosfilmproduction, 1993; The Girl who kissed Stalin, SR, 1995; The Different Faces of Sergei Eisenstein, 1998), curated exhibits and developed multimedia projects. She taught at the Humboldt University and Free University, Berlin, Stanford, UC Berkeley and the International Film School in Cologne. In 2012-2012 she received a Fellowship at the Stanford Humanities Center.

Ilya Budraitskis

Political theorist, publicist, lecturer at the Moscow School of Social and Economic Sciences and at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Moscow, member of the editorial board of Moscow Art Magazine.
The event was organized with the support of the Goethe-Institute in Moscow
September 27
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