Could Goebbels have filmed “Avatar”?

During orientation week, new ASC German student Andrea Harris and I had a chat about German films and she mentioned to me an article that talked about the Nazis having shot 3D movies. She sent me the piece, and I thought I give a quick summary.

Indeed, digging around in the Berlin Filmarchiv, Australian director Philippe Mora had found two black-and-white films shot with a prism in front of two lenses to create a better sense of three-dimensional space; hence the German term “Raumfilme” for this technique.

So, is this how Hitler watched films?

hitler3d.jpg
(Picture: http://www.futuredimensions.net/wp-content/uploads/hitler3d.jpg)

No. Film historians are not very surprised, some of them claim to have known about the experiments all along. The two films themselves are not particularly sensational or political: one is a spot for a life insurance company, the other shows Bratwursts on a grill at a local “Fest.” The German newspaper Die Welt seems a bit insulted that Australian Mora heralds his findings under the banner of “Nazi 3D films,” accusing him of sensationalism. But, then, Die Welt’s headline reads “Schon zu Nazi-Zeiten wurde an 3D-Filmen gearbeitet [Already the Nazis have worked on 3D films]”–not exactly an academically sober title either.

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