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Anti-Jewish propaganda film: rich Jews; "degenerate" art; prominent Weimar Jews

Film | Accession Number: 2001.359.1 | RG Number: RG-60.3290 | Film ID: 2503

A propaganda film declared as a "documentary film contribution about the problem of world Judaism," in which antisemitic stereotypes are disseminated by the Nazis, including scenes showing: Poland as a nesting place for Judaism; the comparison of Jews with rats; the difference between Jews and Aryans; "international crime"; "financial Judaism"; "assimilated Jews"; the Jewish influence on economics, culture, and politics; and Jewish religious practice with a portrayal of haggling and misused sacred Jewish texts.

An animated diagram illustrating the population of Germany, with the narration: "For every thousand struggling Germans there were ten Jews, who were always united in one common aim in genuine or feigned rivalry - collective exploitation of the Germans." The German populace is represented by many white figures covering the map of Germany, while the Jews are depicted as black figures that appear and then disperse among the Germans. The animation diagrams illustrate the number of professional occupations -- judges, lawyers, prosecutors, doctors - that were dominated by Jews in 1933. 00:36:11 The commentary notes comparative average wages. "While millions of native Germans were unemployed and in distress, immigrant Jews had in a few years gained fantastic fortunes." Film of Germans living in make-shift homes and women scavenging for coal. The title "Inflation" is followed by footage of bank notes and then by stills of Jewish businessmen Willy and Leo Sklarek, Iwan Kutisker, Julius Barmat, Franz von Mendelssohn and Ludwig Katzenellenbogen. Film of classical sculptures, and famous paintings, including Botticelli's "Venus", Michelangelo's "Creation" and Cranach's "Madonna Under the Apple Tree", with an organ playing Bach in the background. Narration: "Jews are at their most dangerous when they meddle in a people's culture, religion and art." 00:38:10 Film of modern "degenerate" art including paintings by Nolde ("The Lost Paradise"), F. F. Kaiser, George Grosz, Paul Kleinschmidt and Otto Dix, woodcuts and sculptures. Film of primitive art sculptures cuts to brief images of black entertainers, while the music shifts to African music. Narration: "These fevered fantasies of incurably sick intellects were once presented to public opinion by Jewish art theorists as the highest manifestation of art." The narrator continues with a litany of the German cultural enterprises (music, architecture, sculpture) that have been brought low by the Jews. This is accompanied by stills of examples of degenerate art. 00:39:10 Black performers (a male banjo player and female singer) are separately juxtaposed next to African-style sculptures and the interior of a German theater, respectively. Still photographs of prominent Jews from the Weimar period: Alfred Kerr, Kurt Tucholsky and Magnus Hirschfeld. After the still of Hirschfeld appear several sexually provocative publications, one stacked on top of the other. 00:40:06 Immediately following is a still of Albert Einstein, whom the narrator dubs "The relativity-Jew Einstein, who hid his hatred of Germany behind obscure pseudoscience." A still of Leo Kestenberg is followed by representations from Weimar-era theater: advertisements for burlesque-type stage shows ("A Thousand Naked Women!!"). Stills of: Hermann Haller, Rudolf Nelson, Alfred and Fritz Rotter, James Klein, Max Reinhardt and "Jewish comics" such as Max Ehrlich, Paul Morgan, Max Hansens. "And it is no different with film": stills or footage of: Richard Oswald, Kurt Gerron, Rosa Valetti, Curt Bois, who, the narrator notes, "enjoying himself in a particularly perverse portrayal" appears in drag, makes himself up to go out on stage, and does so on the arm of a woman dressed as a man.

Production:  1940
Accessed at United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of Bundesarchiv
Record last modified: 2020-08-04 09:21:09
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