The Criterion Channels'' June lineup focuses on Ulrike Ottinger, an unsung hero of the German New Wave, and her unintentional teen protagonist. But each film''s impressive narrative, rich production technique, and humorously humorous performance make Ottingers a distinctly different appearance. In particular, Ottingers'' adolescent satire Dorian Gray in the Mirror of the Yellow Press provides a near-perfect perspective into the Cold War critique and feminist liberation at the core of
With the start of the Berlin trilogy, Tabea Blumenschein''s dissatisfied drunk punk protagonist expresses her self-indulgence despite the coldness of early 21st-century architecture. Ottinger excels at the Ticket of No Return, but emphasizes her self-defying sentiment as a result of her unabashed self-proclamation.
While international films of the following decade like Susan Seidelmans Smithereens and Bette Gordons Variety would engage in similar post-punk statements on personal liberation from the late Cold War patriarchy, Ticket of No Return remains ahead of its time in terms of Ottingers'' witty and emotionally complex approach to personal disillusionment in the face of a hostile heteronormative society. Instead of embodying the masses through an ensemble-centric Neorealism, Ottinger interrupts the film with
Blumenschein''s silent drunken realism combines the personal experience of a character study with the performative sociopolitical satire, revealing the whole scope of Ottingers'' humorous perspective on feminin self-confidence and political reheaval in the midst of Cold War Germany.
Freak Orlando, a film that has expanded beyond Blumenschein''s personal freedom and social subversion, is looking into the ensemble comedy in tandem with collaborations with filmmakers including Delphine Seyrig (Last Year at Marienbad), Eddie Constantine (Alphaville), and Eric Rohmers. Freak Orlando, however, isn''t a fan of a formal gender swap, but instead allows the film to meet audiences at any levels with equal entertainment value and intellectual stimulation.
Freak Orlando combines colorful costuming and found locations throughout contemporary Berlin as a glorious fable of freedom of expression in the midst of a broken German society. Culminating in an unparalleled performative ride into the sunset, Freak Orlando reflects on Ticket of No Return''s creative promise by a communal celebration of personal difference and queer individualism.
Dorian Gray in the Mirror of the Yellow Press opens a satisfying and unsettling satirical web against the unchecked influence of tabloid media and the oppressive intrusion of political surveillance in the Cold War period. By removing flaws of equating scenes including photographs of Berlin''s iconic streets and graveyards, Ottingers Dorian Gray recovers superficiality as a result of multilayered personal development. In the midst of cultural flux, Ottingers Dorian Gray is drawn to the e
Though each of the films in The Berlin Trilogy are akin to queerness, one element of Ottingers'' artistic ability is revealed in her own contribution to the creation of contemporary queer cinema. From the horrifying meditation on disillusioned self-discovery in Freak Orlando and Dorian Gray in the Mirror of the Yellow Press, Ottingers films simultaneously capture a specific moment in German history and remain a mainstream post-punk statement. Ulrike Ottinger, however, has received the same accolade and