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  • Patience (After Sebald) [DVD]
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Patience (After Sebald) [DVD]

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Product details

  • Directors: Grant Gee
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: SODA
  • DVD Release Date: 23 April 2012
  • Run Time: 86 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B007C17YG8
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 31,672 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


Product Description

Documentary about the life and work of the late author W.G. Sebald, directed by Grant Gee. Though born and raised in Germany, Sebald relocated to Britain in the 1970s to work at the University of East Anglia and a number of his books display the influence British life and the English countryside had upon him. The documentary draws on one of Sebald's most celebrated works, 'The Rings of Saturn', in which he describes at length a journey along the East Anglian coast, the people he meets and the memories it provokes. The film recreates elements of the walk and also talks to fellow artists who were influenced by Sebald, including Robert Macfarlane, Rick Moody and Tacita Dean.


The life and work of cult writer W. G. Sebald has been brought to the big screen for the first time by Grammy-nominated filmmaker, Grant Gee. Gee 's previous work includes the Radiohead documentary Meeting People is Easy which followed the band on tour for their third album, OK Computer, as well as music videos for Gorillaz, Nick Cave, Suede and The Kills. In 1993 he made Joy Division. Patience is a haunting, hypnotic work that takes a walk through Suffolk and is based on the best-selling novel The Rings Of Saturn.

 Extras: Ambient Visual Representation of the film scored by The Caretaker Extras: Poster Map of the Entire Rings of Saturn by Rick Moody Ambient re-mix of the film by The Caretaker.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

33 of 41 people found the following review helpful By thevulturespeaks on 3 July 2012
Format: DVD
Following in the footsteps of the narrator of W G Sebald's extraordinary work The Rings of Saturn sadly makes for a most pedestrian experience.
The film is disappointing on so many levels that it left me, as an admirer of Sebald's books, angered and profoundly depressed but, sad to say, not really surprised, given the British tendency to reduce all forms of cultural enterprise to the level of a National Trust magazine feature. One wonders whether director Grant Gee thought at all about the medium he was using or what 'a documentary film' actually means; surely the opportunity was there to explore in a Sebaldian way - allusively, tangentially, playfully - Sebald's extraordinary text and its impact on a generation of artists. Instead, we have a film which is earnest but wearisome; leaden-footed, and deeply unimaginative. Why, for example, are all the people interviewed either British or American? Given that Sebald was German, and wrote in German, achieved literary fame first in Germany and given that his subject, by and large, was the 'tacit conspiracy' of silence in post-war Germany, would it not have been worthwhile to talk to some Germans? It says something about the film's cosily insular outlook - something Sebald repeatedly and pointedly pokes fun at - that even though much is made of his European sensibility, and his work's Nobel Prize-worthy international resonance, the only German accent we hear belongs to Sebald himself.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Robin Shipp on 25 May 2012
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I had read 'Rings of Saturn' and I come from East Anglia so I was bound to go for a film based on Sebald's book. Will this make sense without a review of the book too? I'm not sure. I won't go into it here, but the book is weird, very personal, goes off in many different directions but is totally fascinating. The film has the same sort of free-ranging weirdness and includes interesting insights into Sebald from writers and friends.
If you have read the book then, in my estimation, the film will hugely complement it. If you see the film first it will probably make you want to read the book but it might just put you off.
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12 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Ian on 2 Jun. 2012
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Patience (After Sebald) is a highly evocative film which captures the quiet, uncanny melancholy of Sebalds's book, The Rings of Saturn. Some of the text of the book is read as a voice-over as the camera scans scenes described by Sebald in his pilgrimage across the coastal plains of Suffolk. Sebald's own voice is also occasionally heard as he talks about his own work. Poets and artists also describe the techniques that he uses to produce the effects that the book evokes. The film ends with a rather strange photographic transformation at the place of Sebald's sudden death where smoke from a firework gradually transforms into an image of his doleful face, heavy with eyebrows.

Sebald is one of the most interesting German writers to emerge since the Second World War. He supervised the translations of his work into English himself so, although his work is German in origin, the English versions have the same authority as the original German. His work owes a great deal to writers in the German tradition such as Kafka and Walter Benjamin but also to Freud's psychological insights into aesthetics and to the phenomenological tradition that featured at the University of Freiburg when Sebald was a student there in the 1960's.

Anybody who has been fascinated and captivated by Sebald's writing, particularly The Rings of Saturn will find this DVD a satisfying supplement to their of Sebald's books - which, because of his untimely death in 2001, will remain forever sparse.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Shaun Caton on 3 July 2013
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Lovers of W.G.Sebald's novels and essays will find this tiresome plodding and meandering film without much point to it unless you have recently graduated from some provincial art school with a third in film making. On the rare occasions when you actually hear the late author's beautiful voice (speaking in English with a mild German intonation) you are reminded that this is a film ostensibly about a truly talented and gifted writer, that it purports in part to be a hommage and a poetic eulogy to his metaphysical journeying. At least this is what I thought it would be when I purchased the film. Instead, it is overly long and incredibly boring with long pseudo experimental split screen techniques overlaid with some odious old luvvie reading chunks of Sebald's work. To label the film a triumph of style over content would be highly accurate as it lumbers ponderously on and on with many the introduction of many BBC lilting thespian voices reading and muttering text overlaid with slow panning shots of the moody East Anglian countryside and coastline shot in attractive chiaroscuro. Invariably, the film lacks any cohesion or intellectual gravitas, and the ability to hold its viewers attention is diminshed by its reliance on split/mutliple screen images to evoke something like meaning. Sadly it cannibalises itself as it becomes immersed in long and drawn out experimental editing and post production gimmicks no doubt, to compensate for its own appalling lack of originality. It is excruciatingly dull and not a tribute to a highly original writer but a pastiche of egomaniacal pretension that comes close to onanism on screen.
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