(Airstrip - Aufbruch der Moderne, Teil III)
Germany, 2014, DCP, color, 108 min.
German with English subtitles.
Among the most complexly ambitious films to date by acclaimed German director Heinz Emigholz, The Airstrip is a profound study of the heavy legacy of modernist architecture that traces its deep roots in the fascist ideologies and militarist imperatives that rose to strength in the WWII era and continue to gain strength to this day. The Airstrip is the third part of a series Emigholz has called “The Decampment of Modernism” and that brings a sharpened ideological lens to the exploration of 20th century architecture that has remained the major thrust of his prolific career. Here Emigholz traces an itinerant pilgrim path that defines an inexorable through line from Ancient Rome to the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, broken occasionally by fascinating asides and reflections on documentary cinema itself. The Airstrip makes clear the oversized role of concrete as a foundation of the modern militarist state whose puissance is still felt in the uncanny strength of the massive buildings that remain. – HG
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