October 01, 2015
Gore maven Maniac shifts gears and offers an historical edit, interweaving Triumph Of The Will with two horrific concentration camp documentaries. As parable, this might be interpreted as a cause and effect warning. He has modified the musical score, with imaginative choices. No over the top Laibach or Rammstein here. Not that I am altogether pleased with this edit. It suffers a drawback which I shall go into later.
Video - 1920 X 1080p AVC. Wow, this Nuremberg is crisp! Much sharper than my DVD. The camp footage less so. The editing is fine, shifting between events during the six day rally of 1934, and the subsequent aftermath ten years later.
Audio - 128 kbps AC-3, 2 channel stereo. Few subs - a major error. The sound is excellent, and the music discreet, never dominating speeches. Pink Floyd instrumentals will be most recognized, yet all selections are judicious.
Narrative - Maniac shuffles Leni Riefenstahl's chronology a little, though not to the point of being distracting. He has completely discarded the Hitlerjugend, speechifying by lesser party leaders, military maneuvers. Retained is the pageantry and several of Hitler's speeches.
Enjoyment - The lack of subtitles really bugs me. Maniac uses them sparingly to describe ongoing events. For the impassioned speeches, nothing. I loaded my Synapse DVD, which was subtitled throughout. This was a decision of the editor and I wish he had done otherwise. It lessens the cause n effect scenario.
On a plus side, if you can call it that, reels of the interpolating concentration camp footage were shocking. Much of this derived from Hitchcock's "Memory Of The Camps," which had been suppressed for decades, and which I had never viewed. Camps included Dachau, Buchenwald, Belsen. Boneyards, mass grave pits, corpses that resemble carcasses hanging in a slaughterhouse. The casual disposal of humanity is a lesson constantly forgotten then relived. Powerful to witness.
Final thoughts: This will be tough to take for many. While I find the lack of subs during speeches a blunder, those who understand German will not. Maniac is a prolific and good editor. He should be encouraged more, especially in forays beyond the Slasher category. Just my 2p.