• Fate at the Wheel

    1954. Austria. Aldo Vergano. 103 min.

Monday, April 7, 2014, 7:15 p.m.

Theater 2 (The Roy and Niuta Titus Theater 2), T2

  • Fate at the Wheel

    1954. Austria. Directed by Aldo Vergano. Screenplay by Ruth Wieden, Wolf-Dietrich Friese. With Winfried Schatz, Traute Wassler, Harry Fuss. The least known of the first-generation Neorealists, Aldo Vergano made an iconic film in 1946 (Il sole sorge ancora [The Sun Always Rises]), but soon lost his footing in Italian cinema when the industry began excluding communists. At Vienna’s Rosenhügel Studios, situated in the Soviet zone until 1955, Vergano was able to direct his last film: a rare Austrian example of a part-neorealist, part-socialist Heimatfilm. Fate at the Wheel is the story of a young life that spirals downward, then upward. As critic Olaf Möller correctly describes, “the cylinders are whispering Franzl’s name“: our protagonist is so obsessed with cars that he turns to stealing one, and things only get worse from there. During the early 1950s, several left-wing internationalists, including Alberto Cavalcanti and Louis Daquin, found a brief respite at Rosenhügel Studios. Among the most celebrated was composer Hanns Eisler, a Viennese modernist with film music credits in more than 10 countries. His score for Schicksal is among his most subdued, but it literally explodes when the car engine is turned on. Courtesy Bundesarchiv Filmarchiv. In German; English subtitles. 103 min.

In the Film exhibition Vienna Unveiled: A City in Cinema

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