Olympics -- Berlin 1936
- Event Date
- August 1-16, 1936
- US Holocaust Memorial Museum, gift of William Haller
The first title says, "Short cross-section of the 11th Olympiad Berlin." The film seems to have been produced on orders of the Reichssportfuehrers or Reich Sport Leader. Another title on the screen says, Olympic Berlin (Olympisches Berlin).
Scenes of the streets of Berlin decked out in flags and other paraphernalia for the Olympics and crowds in the street. Various famous locations, including the Lustgarten and the Brandenburg Gate. Shot of the Olympic flame and flags, including the American flag. The next scenes show the Olympic village, including shots of athletes.
The next title says "The Olympic flame comes to Berlin." Shots of Greece, where the flame originated, then its progress as it is carried by athletes through several countries, including Hungary and Yugoslavia. Arrival in Berlin through crowds in the streets, including some who give the Hitler salute. The opening celebration on August 1, 1936. Military and other members of Nazi organizations march through the streets. Arrival of the members of the Olympic Committee followed by the lighting of the flame. Low aerial shot of Adolf Hitler arriving with his entourage by car. Crowds enter the Olympic stadium, followed by a long shot of the crowded stadium. A zeppelin flies low over the crowds. Hitler enters the stadium on foot, accompanied by members of the Olympic Committee (?). Brief close up of Joseph Goebbels. Hitler greets a young girl on the field. The contingents from various nations, beginning with Greece, march onto the field. Shots of the crowd watching. The athletes from Italy give a Hitler salute. The head of the Switzerland group throws a flag into the air and then catches it. 01:09:20 The small American contingent enters the stadium, followed immediately by Germany. Title: "The Fuehrer declares the ceremonies open." A gun salute is followed by the raising of the Olympic flag. Richard Strauss directs the orchestra in the hymn that he composed for the opening ceremonies. The athlete arrives with the Olympic flame and lights the torch. Graf Baillet-Latour speaks to the crowds. A title provides a quote from his speech.
Record last modified: 2018-03-07 14:22:49
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Also in Charles Frederick Haller Collection
The films were brought back from Germany by William Haller’s father, Charles Frederick Haller, after the war. Four reels contain footage showing the 1936 Olympics in Berlin while the other two contain scenes of Frankfurt and the Rhine River.
A variety of nice quality city views of Frankfurt, including houses, the Main river, a busy café, landmarks (the opera, the university) and townspeople. 03:03:56 People buy wurst and bread from vendors, followed by a scene in a beer garden. 03:06:20 Nazi flags are visible in the street, dating this film to the Nazi period (probably early on). Interior shots of the Goethe House museum. Staging of Goethe's play "Goetz" and other works outdoors in front of the City Hall. Title: "On the way from yesterday to today." Shots of streetcars. Interiors of the art museum. Title: "The face of today." Huge modern apartment buildings. A row of cribs with babies in an outdoor nursery. Naked toddlers play in sandboxes. A crowd of people sunbathe in a park. A female teacher leads a crowd of children in outdoor calisthenics exercises. 03:17:53 Children in a classroom. The kids take their chairs outside to have class in the sun. Nice shots of children at their desks cutting shapes out of paper. Girls tend a garden. Shots of a church.
Line drawn map showing the course of the Rhein and the major cities along its route. The first title says that the Rhein originates in the Swiss Alps. Shots of clouds and snow-covered mountains. The next title says that the snowmelt from glaciers is the source of the river. Shots of rushing water flowing down from the glaciers. Title: The water streams from all slopes (?)." More shots of rushing water and valleys. Title: "Chalets are the indication of the settlements of the anterior Rhine." Small dwellings or farm buildings, cows grazing on a hillside, long shot of a small group of dwellings in a valley. Title: "Next come the [larger] villages." Shots of houses and villagers walking along a road. The camera focuses on a well or fountain, from which drips what must be river water. Title: "A second source river, the middle Rhine, runs through wild rocky gorges." Lovely shots of water rushing through a rocky channel. Scenes of the river shot from a train or car traveling along a road. Title: "Near Ilanz, the first Rhine city, the river has dug itself many hundreds of meters into the cliff face." Towering cliffs rise up from the riverbed. Title: "Yet a third Rhine source meets up with the anterior Rhein at Reichenau." More shots of the Rhein from a vehicle; misty shot of a boat on the river. An animated map indicates the location of Friedrichshafen, followed by shots of the city from the river. The Graf Zeppelin inside its hangar and in the air over Friedrichshafen. Low aerial shots of the city. An animated map indicates the city of Konstanz. Brief scenes of the city, followed by shots of Schaffhausen and the Rheinfall. Nice shots of the very strong and wide rushing water (where it empties into Lake Konstanz?). Scenes from Saeckingen and Basel.
Title: "The Games Begin." Scenes show various events interspersed with crowd scenes. In most cases there is a title after the event that names the winners and gives their times. The games begin with a warm up (or a first heat?) sprint, won by a man name Borchmeyer. Tilly Fleischer throws the javelin, winning the first gold medal for Germany. Hitler and Hermann Goering congratulate the athletes on the podium. 01:13:38 Jesse Owens wins the 100 m sprint in 10.3 seconds. Slow motion of the women's 100 m sprint, won by the American Stephens. The footage of the two men's and women's races is repeated. Slow motion of the men's and women's hurdles. The men's race is won by the American. A title states that three women appeared to come in first and the result was determined by a camera (photo-finish). Slow motion of part of the men's 1500 meter, then the 5,000 meter. The next events are: shot put, men's 10,000 meter (winners are greeted by Hitler and other Nazi leaders), 3,000 meter obstacle course, 50 km race walk, men's marathon, 4 x 100 meter women's relay, javelin, women's high jump (shot of German athletes Kaun and Ratjen at rest), men's hammer throw, 01:24:08 Jesse Owens sets a new world record in the long jump, while the German comes in second, triple jump, high jump, bicycle race, 2 km tandem bicycle race, fly weight boxing, heavy weight boxing, weightlifting. A title indicates that this is the end of Part One of the film.
Part Two. The Olympic flame arrives at the regatta course at Gruenau. The first event is the 10,000 meter kayak race followed by rowing (in the rain - shots of crowd with umbrellas). Hitler greets the head of the international rowing organization and watches the race. Hitler and Goering cheer from the stands as Germany wins. Shot of the German victors sitting in their boat and giving a Hitler salute. Start of another rowing race, close-ups of Nazi dignitaries in the stands.
Further scenes of the 1936 Olympics. The action moves to the harbor in Kiel for a sailing race. Panning shots of the boats and flags of several nations. Intertitles introduce the German sailors as they arrive on the dock. German sailors win the gold and the bronze medals. Next are men's and women's swimming and diving events. Goering and Hess are present in the stands. Next events: water polo, field hockey, soccer, gymnastics (synchronized exercises of large numbers of athletes, first men, then women), pommel horse, vault, high bar, horseback riding events. Closing ceremonies, performed in the evening (shots are dark and high contrast). The last title makes reference to the next Olympics in Tokyo, which were cancelled because of the war.