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THE ZARAH LEANDER COLLECTION

Das Lied der Wuste; Der Weg ins Freie; Gabriela; Premiere
$39.99

IF ORDERED IN PLASTIC CASES, THE ENTIRE COLLECTION COMES IN ONE CASE, WHICH HOLDS MULTIPLE DVDs:

 
4 DVD set of Zarah Leander classics at a discounted price for the Zarah Leander fan.  Please note that these films do NOT have subtitles.

DAS LIED DER WUSTE  (1939):


Engineer Nick Brent has discovered deposits of copper in the desert.  To protect said deposits, Germany sends a military contingent under the leadership of his old friend, Captain Frank Stan, whom he's known for twenty years.  At the same time, a small private plane arrives with the well-known opera singer, Grace Collins.  She has arrived to give a few performances and meets with some bankers and businessmen, who have certain views about these copper mines.  Naturally, the two main characters are drawn almost simultaneously to Grace and are vying for her affection.  In the old tradition, they decide to draw lots.  But the actual results of this contest for love don't match the easy solution of who has the longer matchstick. 

IN GERMAN WITH NO SUBTITLES.  EXCELLENT, DVD DIGITAL QUALITY.  APPROX. 81 MINS.

DER WEG INS FREIE  (1941):
It’s the middle of the 19th Century:  The Italian singer Antonia Corvelli can thank her success to the attentions of Count Oginski.  But when she gets to know Detlev von Blossin, a Prussian officer and estate owner, she marries him; but doesn’t want to give up her career.  Now her husband makes her decide.  When he finds out, that she signed a contract to appear in Vienna long before, he returns disappointed to his estate alone.
 
Mitte des 19. Jahrhunderts: Die italienische Sängerin Antonia Corvelli verdankt ihren Aufstieg dem Grafen Oginski. Als sie aber Detlev von Blossin kennen lernt, einen preußischen Offizier und Gutsbesitzer, heiratet sie ihn, möchte aber ihre Karriere trotzdem nicht aufgeben. Nun stellt ihr Mann sie vor die Wahl. Als er erfährt, dass sie längst einen neuen Vertrag für Wien unterschrieben hat, kehrt er enttäuscht alleine auf sein Gut zurück.

THERE IS A NEWSREEL ALONG WITH THE FILM, JUST AS GERMAN AUDIENCES MIGHT HAVE SEEN WHEN THE MOVIE WAS FIRST SHOWN (except this newsreel may not be contemporary to when the film was released).

DVD-R IS IN GERMAN WITH NO SUBTITLES (except for the Newsreel).

QUALITY (of feature film only): 

 

  • Sharpness of picture?  - unsharp features, but decent film quality overall

 

 

LENGTH OF FEATURE FILM:  106 mins

LENGTH OF NEWSREEL:  29 mins

GABRIELA  (1950):
After WW2, Zarah Leander made her come-back in German cinema with this film. Whether on purpose or not, director/writer Geza von Cziffra made this film a Leander vehicle of the old (UfA) style films of the 40's with Leander as an independent lady from the upper middle class.  As it turned out, this style had become obsolete by 1950 and the film was a box-office failure (as was Leander's return to the German cinema as well).  Zarah Leander plays Gabriela Donath, a celebrated music hall singer, who, after divorcing from her husband, gave her daughter Andrea to foster parents.  Gabriela now wants to cut and run from her past and resume contact with the child.  But now, the child has grown up to become a stranger to her.

DVD-R IS IN GERMAN WITH NO SUBTITLES

QUALITY (of feature film only): 

 

  • Digital Quality?  - yes
  • Sharpness of picture? - excellent, digital quality

 

 

LENGTH OF FEATURE FILM:  93 mins

PREMIERE 
 

Ein zwielichtiger Finanzier, der Geld in ein Revuetheater investiert hat, wird während der Premiere in seiner Loge erschossen. Der Schuss kam von der Bühne – und Kommissar Helder macht sich mithilfe des Inspizienten noch während der Show an die Ermittlung des Täters. Unter Verdacht steht zunächst die Hauptdarstellerin Carmen, da der Ermordete sie bedrängte, außerdem ihr Bühnenpartner und Ex-Geliebter Fred, sowie die enttäuschte Lydia, die zugunsten Carmens aus dem Ensemble entlassen wurde. Pünktlich zum Vorstellungsende stellt Helder den Täter, und Carmen findet wieder mit Fred zusammen. Geza von Bolvary präsentierte Zarah Leander in ihrer ersten deutschsprachigen Filmrolle mit zahlreichen Gesangseinlagen und knüpfte damit an ihren enormen Theatererfolg an.

The Austrian musical Premiere showcases the talents of Swedish stage and screen star Zara Leander.   It's a backstage drama with the action equally divided on both sides of the curtain.   As Fraulein Leander prepares for opening night, her life is thrown into turmoil by a variety of romantic misadventures.   But she manages to show up on stage at the appointed time, scoring a huge success.   It was reported that, during the filming of Zara Leander's musical numbers, the audience (ostensibly made up of paid extras) broke into spontaneous applause; when the film premiered in Vienna, the first-night moviegoers did the same.

DVD-R IS IN GERMAN WITH NO SUBTITLES.  APPROX. 73 MINS. TOTAL.  EXCELLENT DIGITAL QUALITY.
 
 
IN GERMAN WITH NO SUBTITLES. VARIBALE QUALITY (see individual film descriptions), BUT OVERALL EXCELLENT.
 
TOTAL DURATION:  382 MINUTES  (MORE THAN 6 HOURS!)

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