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Daring to be Free

Different from the Others + The Song of Life

This emotive and intellectual 1919 film sparked riots in Germany for its gay love story.

Image from Different from the Others

Different from the Others

Anders als die Andern

Germany 1919
Dir Richard Oswald
With Conrad Veidt, Reinhold Schünzel, Magnus Hirschfeld
English version
With Joachim Bärenz score
A reconstruction by Filmmuseum München

A gay violinist (Veidt) manages to find love but is threatened by blackmail. This powerful plea for the decriminalisation of homosexuality, co-written by pioneering sexologist Magnus Hirschfeld, sparked riots and censorship, only surviving incomplete. With a fearless performance from Veidt, it packs an emotional and intellectual punch – revealing both Weimar Berlin’s flourishing gay subculture and the devastating consequences of mainstream intolerance.

+ The Song of Life

Das Lied vom Leben

Germany 1931
Dir Alexis Granowsky
With Aribert Mog, Margot Ferra, Ernst Busch
With English subtitles

How can we lead more authentic lives? This daring surrealist sound film centres on a young woman who rejects marriage to a wealthy baron. Grotesque, lyrical and upbeat by turns, her tale is interspersed with cabaret-style songs from leading popular composers. A censorship row was sparked by a scene which some feared would put women off childbirth.


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