Film ID:
YFA 3295

KNIEPHOFSTRASSE

1974

Visitor Tabs

Description

Experimental film that both plays with the effect of sound on the perception of an image and examines modern life in an urban, industrial setting through the microcosm of one corner of Kniephofstrasse in Berlin, Germany.
Language: German

Titles: 'Wer' (who); 'warum,' (why); 'diese' (this); 'woche' (week); 'zu viel L?rm in der Umwelt'(too much noise in the environment)
This film centres on an establishing shot looking down Kniephofstrasse toward its intersection with Kornerstrasse just before it passes under the Joachim-Tiburtius Bridge. Woolley deconstructs this environment, using zooms and variously angled shots detailing the elements present in the original image, including: a service station at the intersection, a karate and judo studio with a Mercedes Benz sign on top, a factory smokestack, people walking on the street, and, most prevalently, all kinds of cars, which drive down Kniephofstrasse, visit the service station, and constantly traverse the Joachim-Tiburtius overpass. The environment is shown during day and night and in winter snow, when camera follows a Volkswagen Beetle with snow on its hood. Occasionally, the action is sped up, and the frequency of cutting increases dramatically at the climax of the film. The final shot is still. The abstract soundtrack, is composed of 1970s band music, the sound of cars on the overpass, wind blowing, women screaming, synthetic musical tones and occasional philosophical voiceover in German.
Ending Titles:
'Kniephofstr' appears in the centre of the screen, with two lines of illegible, scribbled-out phrases both above and below it.
'ein Film von Richard Woolley' (a film by Richard Woolley)
Berlin 1974

In the Cutting Copy, the Titles: 'diese' (this), 'wer' (who), 'diese woche' (this week) and 'zu viel L?rm in der Umwelt'(too much noise in the environment) appear in various permutations following the final credits. The Cutting Copy is 925 ft long (26 min), which corresponds to the length of the separate Magnetic Master.

The Standard 8mm Test Footage (250 ft, 14 min) includes similar images and editing, including superimposition. Unlike the final film, it also contains some colour (Agfacolour) segments, and some of the footage towards the end features the director's hand or bespectacled face superimposed over the urban images.