*Die Gebrüder Skladanowsky (A Trick of the Light).* 1996. Germany. Directed by Wim Wenders, with graduates of the University of Television and Film Munich. Courtesy of Wim Wenders Stiftung 2014

Program 118 min.

Die Gebrüder Skladanowsky (A Trick of the Light). 1996. Germany. Directed by Wim Wenders, with graduates of the University of Television and Film Munich. In German; English subtitles. 80 min.

With Udo Kier, Nadine Büttner, Hans Moser, Lucie Hürtgen-Skladanowsky. Made in the wake of cinema’s 100th anniversary by Wenders and his students at the Munich Film Academy, A Trick of the Light revisits a lesser-known episode in the history of the medium. It tells the story of the Skladanowsky brothers, who developed one of the first motion picture devices—the Bioscop—and premiered it in Germany in 1895, two months before the Lumière brothers inaugurated their own Cinématographe in Paris. The saga of their invention unfolds through a series of historical re-creations that were shot with a hand-cranked camera and draw playfully from the stylistic tropes of early cinema; between these moments of fin-de-siècle slapstick, Max Skladanowsky’s irreverent 91-year-old daughter Lucie vividly recalls episodes from her family’s exploits. At times the two eras converge, with specters of the Skladanowsky clan haunting the contemporary movie set, ultimately suggesting that 1990s Berlin is likewise a society facing momentous transformation.

Wim Wenders: Commercial Work and Music Videos. Directed by Wim Wenders. Approx. 10 min.

A selection of shorts, all centering on the art of making movies and of looking

War in Peace. 2006. Directed by Wim Wenders. 4 min.

Democratic Republic of Congo. In Wenders’s contribution to the omnibus film To Each His Own Cinema, produced for the 60th Cannes Film Festival, young boys in the Congolese town of Kabalo watch Ridley Scott’s Black Hawk Down.

Invisible Crimes. 2006. Directed by Wim Wenders. 24 min.

Democratic Republic of Congo. Produced for Doctors without Borders, this powerful documentary about violence against women was also filmed in the Congolese town of Kabalo.

  1. Monday, March 16, 2015,
    1:30 p.m.

    Mezzanine, Education and Research Building, Theater 3
    The Museum of Modern Art
  2. Wednesday, March 11, 2015,
    1:30 p.m.

    T2, Theater 2
    The Museum of Modern Art
This film accompanies Wim Wenders.