Contact | Press | Legal Notice | German

Die deutschen Filme - The German Films 

A joint project of Deutscher Kinematheksverbund (1999)

A CD-ROM presents the results of two working groups of the film-historical institutions that form the „Deutscher Kinematheksverbund". First, there are all basic filmographical data of all feature films produced in Germany between 1895 and 1998: the "German Filmography" or "Defi". Second, the 100 most important films in German film history are presented extensively: the "Top 100" – with full cast and credits, content descriptions, reviews, whereabouts of film prints and with the best illustrative material to be found in the archives of the film-historical institutions. 

The then new digital technology allowed, what would have been impossible in traditional forms of publication: the basic filmographical data of 17,905 German feature films make the everyday work of film historians and scholars a lot easier, they facilitate comparisons and exact identifications. Furthermore the extensive informations and illustrations on the Top 100-films constitute a centralized catalogue of all materials held by the different members of the Kinematheksverbund. 


The second database, presented on this CD-ROM consists of information and materials concerning the 100 most important German films: the "Top 100". There are extensive filmographies, content descriptions and reviews. 2,659 illustrations from all seven institutions, that form the Kinematheksverbund, provide a centralized catalogue of Top 100-material in their archives. Users can glance through the collections of: Bundesarchiv-Filmarchiv, Berlin; Deutsches Filminstitut – DIF and Deutsches Filmmuseum, both Frankfurt am Main; the film museums in Düsseldorf; Munich and Potsdam; Stiftung Deutsche Kinemathek, Berlin. The CD-ROM presents film stills and set photographs, posters and film scores, script pages and architectural designs. The different institutions and their main areas of expertise are presented with short portraits. Film clips enrich the publication and users learn about the rights holders of the films, and where film prints can be obtained for commercial or non-commercial use.


In the year of cinematography’s centennial anniversary 1995, the Deutscher Kinematheksverbund conducted a survey in search of the 100 German films that were considered the most important. In the first poll 324 film historians, film journalists, film makers and movie owners decided about places 1 to 75, a second poll with 228 votes determinded the places 76 to 100.

Two of the 100 films chosen are from the time before 1914, 37 are from the era of the Weimar Republic, eight from the years of National Socialism, five are from the first few years after World War II, 36 are from the Federal Republic of Germany and twelve from the German Democratic Republic. There are 24 silent films and 76 sound films. The directors Fritz Lang, Georg Wilhelm Pabst and Rainer Werner Fassbinder are listed with six films each (additionally there is one episode by Fassbinder in "DEUTSCHLAND IM HERBST" and the co-direction of Pabst for „DIE WEISSE HÖLLE VOM PIZ PALÜ"). Helmut Käutner, Wolfgang Staudte, Wim Wenders and Konrad Wolf are mentioned with four films each, Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau and Volker Schlöndorff with three films.


The Top 100-films chosen in 1995 have been treated conservationally – where it was still necessary – and are available with at least one film print in good condition. The Bundesministerium des Innern, which was formerly responsible for cultural affairs on a federal level, granted special funding for this purpose. For films from the era of National Socialism, which undeniably are a part of German film history, strict limitations for public screening continue to apply, of course. 


CD-ROM "Die deutschen Filme" >