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W R Visser (Leusden Netherlands)

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Ostpreußen, 5 DVDs
Ostpreußen, 5 DVDs
DVD ~ Hermann Pölking
Preis: EUR 32,99

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5.0 von 5 Sternen good history without any emotional charge, 11. Dezember 2015
Verifizierter Kauf(Was ist das?)
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Ostpreußen, 5 DVDs (DVD)
By now, it has been 70 years ago that the province of East Prussia ('Ostpreussen' in German) got lost for Germany in the violence of World War 2. Shortly afterwards the area was split up in a Russian (northern) part, and a Polish (southern) part. Both parts disappeared behind the 'Iron Curtain', in those days a military-guarded borderline that divided Europe in an American-orientated west and a Communist east.

In particular former East Prussia's northern part almost completely vanished from western view, because for military reasons the Soviet-Russians sealed it off tightly. Not until 1991 the area was re-opened for western visitors.

Given all this, former East Prussia used to evoke pretty strong emotions with Germans who had known the area as a part of Germany. As this generation is (almost) gone by now, time has come to look back on East Prussia in a more distanced and balanced way. And that is exactly what this set of five DVD's does.

The Beautiful Game. Fußball in den 1970ern
The Beautiful Game. Fußball in den 1970ern
von Reuel Golden
  Gebundene Ausgabe
Preis: EUR 39,99

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5.0 von 5 Sternen takes you marvellously back to 1970s international football, 11. Juli 2014
To start with, 'The beautiful game' tells us a message: international football was never more inspired, free-flowing and eye-pleasing than in the 1970s. Shaped by stars like Pelé, Cruijff and Beckenbauer.

When you take this book up for the first time, you will be surprised te see a random-looking collection of photographs. Although all related to 1970s football, many of them do not show a match, or even a pitch.

Just take your time to read & watch, and you'll experience that everything beautifully falls into place. 'The beautiful game' surely revives 1970s international football for you, and puts structure to it. it also helps you to understand & appreciate what exactly happened in those magnificent years.

It all comes along: Brazil's magnificent performance in the 1970 World Cup in Mexico. Followed by the 'Dutch era' in the early 1970s, culminating in Holland's revolutionary 'total football' (this book's cover is orange-coloured !) during the 1974 World Cup -- a spectacular show abruptly broken off in the final by an excellent West German opponent led by Beckenbauer. Thereafter comes the European domination of Bayern München, ending the decade with British football-rule.

'The beautiful game' also touches on the 1978 World Cup in Argentina, where Holland lost its second successive final against another hosting nation. Apart from that, the book also mentiones some very fine 1970s-teams like the French Saint Etienne and the German Borussia Mönchengladbach. As well as the embryonic development of football in the USA.

Unfortunately I must end this review by spotting one minor mistake (page 194-195). On March 3, 1976, the European match between Dynamo Kiev and Saint Etienne was played in Simferopol, and not in Kiev. The mild climate on the Crimea provided a suitable pitch, in strong contrast to conditions in Kiev. .

Elle boit pas, elle fume pas, elle drague pas mais elle cause [FR IMPORT]
Elle boit pas, elle fume pas, elle drague pas mais elle cause [FR IMPORT]
DVD ~ Annie Girardot
Wird angeboten von CULTURE EMPIRE
Preis: EUR 16,06

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5.0 von 5 Sternen a lovely light comedy about blackmail, 23. Januar 2013
Although this DVD surely deserves subtitles, unfortunately they are not provided. So you must understand your French pretty well to follow the plot of this lovely light comedy.

It's about blackmail, and I will not tell you any more to prevent giving its story away. Set in 1970, 'Elle boit pas ....' surely breathes the mood of its time. Making a nice recognition for those who were around in those days, adding extra flavour by its characteristic bright-coloured fashion.

My last praise must be for the quality of its acting. Performed by some of the greatest names around in France at the time: Annie Girardot, Bernard Blier and Mireille Darc.

Let It Bleed: Die Rolling Stones, Altamont und das Ende der 60er Jahre
Let It Bleed: Die Rolling Stones, Altamont und das Ende der 60er Jahre
von Ethan A. Russell
  Gebundene Ausgabe
Preis: EUR 19,95

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5.0 von 5 Sternen five stars is not enough, 18. August 2012
In this book Ethan E. Russell greatly contributes to our objective knowledge about a great traumatic event in Rolling Stones-history: the infamous Altamont-concert from December 1969, where a man from the audience was killed. This happened only less than half a year after another famous traumatic RS-event: the death of former band-member Brian Jones.

Altamont was the last concert of an otherwise succesful RS-tour in the USA. The writer, being around as a photographer at the time, does no more than telling his story - in a rational and balanced way. His tale fits in well with all known facts, and I see no reason to doubt its truth.

Oh yes, and Russell also adds many fine photographs as an extra bonus. As well as his view on the philosophy that the Sixties-pop-culture found its grave at Altamont. Drawing an interesting comparison with Michelangelo Antonioni's famous Sixties-film 'Blow Up'.

Die andere Seite des Mondes: Künstlerinnen der Avantgarde
Die andere Seite des Mondes: Künstlerinnen der Avantgarde
von Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen
  Gebundene Ausgabe

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5.0 von 5 Sternen Geschmackvoll, 22. November 2011
This book shows the work of eight less known German avant-garde female artists from the 1920's and 1930's. Although their names mostly do not show up in regular documentaries about this remarkable in-between-two wars-period, they certainly deserve to be remembered.

Just sit back, relax, and enjoy their art in this fine book. An art always in excellent taste, with unrestricted ways of expression due to the clear instability of the era.

Kunst Sammling Nordrhein Westfalen did a great job by organizing the exhibition to which we owe this book.

Nicht totzukriegen: Roman
Nicht totzukriegen: Roman
von Claus Vaske
Preis: EUR 8,99

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3.0 von 5 Sternen enjoyable up to 90%, 13. August 2011
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Nicht totzukriegen: Roman (Taschenbuch)
A few days ago I noticed this roman in an Osnabrueck shop-window, and felt myself immediately attracted to its original, funny and witty cover. The more so, while the renowned Fischer Verlag had put on an eye-catching sticker with the words 'Unbedingt lesen!'.

And yes, I found its contents to be quite in line with these promises. Claus Vaske keeps you on an eager read, mildly making fun of our values & customs in today's life. Presenting us with a mirror to see our functioning in the busy & stressed West-European society of 2011.

Apart from this, Vaske develops his plot well, too. That is, up to chapter 56 on page 228 (from a total of 250 pages). From then on Vaske fails to explain why his female lead declares herself guilty in the courtroom, after having gone through so much trouble to conceal her many preparations for the murder on her husband. And, secondly, why is this husband around in the courtroom, after earlier she & her friend has sunk his corpse into a lake? And, on top of this all: why must she appear in court for the murder on her husband when the same husband is around in the courtoom?

Of course any 'romancier' should be allowed a fair margin of improbability to make his story work. I do not know if in Germany these margins are wider than abroad, but for me the last 22 pages of 'Nicht totzukriegen' destroy a lot of Vaske's fine wirting before.

Das einfache Leben
Das einfache Leben
von Ernst Wiechert
  Gebundene Ausgabe
Preis: EUR 9,99

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4.0 von 5 Sternen escapism at its best, 15. Juni 2011
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Das einfache Leben (Gebundene Ausgabe)
"...., denn die letzten zehn Jahre waren hart für seinen Glauben gewesen, für den an die göttliche Weltordnung wie für den an die Menschen."

This sentence captures the spirit of "Das einfache Leben". It illustrates how seriously human spirits and hopes were destroyed by the experiences of World War I. Not only in Germany, by the way, but also in England and France.

Consequently Ernst Wiechert offers his readers a most convenient escape by creating a fairytale-environment in the former German province of East Prussia. An evironment that must have offered great emotional comfort to those who suffered. Although they are not among us anymore, Wiechert's book still lively testifies about their deeply hurted convictions. And, since 1945, "Das einfache Leben" acquired an added value as a testimony about the spirit of former East Prussia.

Dresden [2 DVDs]
Dresden [2 DVDs]
DVD ~ Felicitas Woll
Wird angeboten von audiovideostar_2
Preis: EUR 22,50

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4.0 von 5 Sternen a pity they did not choose suitable leads, 30. Januar 2011
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Dresden [2 DVDs] (DVD)
My true congratulations for director Richter's painstaking research on the fate of the city of Dresden: authentic and historically correct.

Given this solid foundation, I feel sorry for Richter's choice of his male & female lead. John Light surely convinces as a RAF bomber-pilot, but not as a love-match for Felicitas Woll. One feels their characters do not match.

As for Felicitas, one also wonders if 'Dresden' is the right film for her. I think she comes out much better in light comedy or slapstick.

Kat Von D: The Tattoo Chronicles | Deutsche Ausgabe
Kat Von D: The Tattoo Chronicles | Deutsche Ausgabe
von Kat Von D
  Gebundene Ausgabe
Preis: EUR 29,95

5.0 von 5 Sternen supported by the New York Times, 2. Januar 2011
I never expected that tattoos could be pictured so tasty, artful & coherent as in 'The Tattoo Chronicles'. Kat Von D (= Katherine Von Drachenberg, which sounds like German nobility) succeeds in lifting tattoo from its usual slightly sleazy setting.

The accompanying texts must be taken for what value you like to add to them. They are personal anyway, and clearly supports Kat Von D's business.

Whatever, I can understand that the New York Times lends its reputation to the very American Kat von D. If tattoo is an art, this book surely is about art.

The Autobiography
The Autobiography
von Marie Helvin
  Gebundene Ausgabe

5.0 von 5 Sternen an unusual lady tells her story, 24. Oktober 2010
Rezension bezieht sich auf: The Autobiography (Gebundene Ausgabe)
What strikes most in this book, is the way its story is told: honest, clear and unpolished. Which is, I think, pretty unusual for a Hawaiian girl that made it to one of the world's top-fashion models.

It's all there: the glitter and shine, the travelling around the world, the expensive hotels, the stories about the London-jetset, and a lasting friendship with Mick Jagger and Jerry Hall. As well as a marriage with David Bailey, back then the world's leading trend-photographer -- catapulting Marie Helvin to world fame.

The other side is there, too: a rush-life, the impossibility to have children, and a rigid diet. And a photobook of lasting fame by Bailey, showing his wife naked in its many pages -- Helvin posed in the understanding that these pictures should be kept private.

It's not for me to judge Marie Helvin's choices. Just enjoy her fine autobiography.

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