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ADOLF AND MARLENE

Germany, 1976 (MIFF 1977)

Director: Ulli Lommel

Adolf (Hitler) sees a film starring Marlene (Dietrich), and falls in love with her. Josef (Gobbels) invites the star to visit Adolf, but the meeting ends in frustration, as Marlene refuses his advances. Not one given to forgo his dreams easily, Adolf makes a secret trip to Casablanca, to see 'his' Marlene . . .

Marlene Dietrich, who despised Hitler and became an ardent anti-Nazi after 1933, issued a writ against Lommel, and stopped the premiere of the film in Germany.

Lommel states thai his aim in making the film was to de-mythify Hitler, to show him as a simple, naive petit-bourgeois, fascinated by the great star Instead of showing the truth, to illustrate his point, Lommel decided to create a 'conceivable historical fiction', in which he could contrast the two great theatrical figures. The director also claims that there is evidence to establish the fact that the German government, in 1937, through Gobbels and Ribbentrop, made ardent overtures to Dietrich to return to Germany: the Nazis wanted to use her reconciliation with the regime for propaganda purposes.

Lommel said: 'Maybe Gobbels succeeded in persuading Marlene to meet the Fuhrer on a single occasion, in order to assess his personality.' The whole film then grew from this central idea.

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