Schlachthäuser der Moderne

Filmstill Slaughterhouses of Modernity

Slaughterhouses of Modernity

Schlachthäuser der Moderne
Heinz Emigholz
German Competition 2022
Documentary Film
80 minutes

An Argentinean builder who has built council halls, cemetery gates and abattoirs in the pampa as if from a modernist assembly line. Then a Bolivian architect, whose gaudy functional buildings in the highland defy description and imagination. Last, but not least, a new old palace in the middle of Berlin. Connections are plentiful, none of them edifying. Heinz Emigholz uses them for a pamphlet against stylistic amnesia and historical falsification.

The first film in Heinz Emigholz’s series “Photography and beyond” was released in 1983 and, including the two works screened by DOK Leipzig this year in the Camera Lucida section, there are now 35. But although “Slaughterhouses of Modernity” uses a number of sequences from the other two works, it has little in common with them in terms of form and ductus. While the aforementioned rather minimalist films do without commentary and partly without inserts, this one is characterised by its edgy monologues and courageous use of stylistic inconsistencies. Polemics and black humour are not unusual in Emigholz’s universe. But one has never seen him spoiling for a fight as gleefully as in this complex exploration of German history and its ugly manifestations. Not so much a late work as a new departure.
Christoph Terhechte

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Heinz Emigholz
Heinz Emigholz
Till Beckmann, Heinz Emigholz
Heinz Emigholz, Till Beckmann
Frieder Schlaich, Irene von Alberti
Rolf Bergmann
Esteban Bellotto, Rainer Gerlach, Christian Obermaier, Jochen Jezussek
Kiev Stingl
World Sales
Frieder Schlaich
Key Collaborator
Angel Cordero Siles
Susanne Bredehöft, Heinz Emigholz, Kiev Stingl, Stefan Kolosko, Arno Brandlhuber
Nominated for: VER.DI Prize for Solidarity, Humanity and Fairness