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Victory of Faith [DVD]

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Product details

  • Actors: Adolf Hitler, Rudolf Hess, Ernst Rohm
  • Directors: Leni Riefenstahl
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: German, Italian
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: Exempt
  • Studio: A&M Productions
  • DVD Release Date: 12 Jan 2005
  • Run Time: 70 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0007T0MZ2
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 113,338 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


Product Description

Victory of Faith, the 1933 documentary movie of the Nazi Party Rally. This is the prequal to the more famous Triumph of the Will. An unusual movie in that it was to be banned by bothe the Nazi party of the Night of the Long Knived and by the allies after the war. German language with English subtitles.

About the Director

World famous film maker Leni Riefenstahl nneds no further introduction. Her work speaks for itself

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By S. Kerr on 13 Feb 2012
Format: DVD
This is a must see movie. Long thought to be "lost" it was "rescued" from the Bundesarcive in Koblenz and put onto the general market. This was the prequal to the far more widely known Triumpg of the Will and is unique in that it was banned by both the National Socialist Government and the Allies.

The NS Government banned it due tothe appearance of Ernst Rohm who was no longer in favour with certain elements within the state.

Even has an originsl "blooper" left in where you see Baldur Von Shirach knock Hitlers hat off the podium onto the ground below...not a good career move one would think.

Seroisly though this is an excellant rendition and all the more unique for the addittional features on the DVD namely the never before seen movie trailer for the Die Deutsche Reichstag in Nuremburg, 5 mins and the famous Word and Deed featurette by Fritz Hippler famous for his Directorshiop of the of Eternal Jew movie, 12mins.

This DVD is PAL format Region 0 70 mins long and really does belong on every movie buffs shelf for the filming techniques as well as military/political historians who may already have Triumph of the Will. All we need is a DVD of Tag der Freiheit to make the complete set of movies that Riefenstahl made for the NSDAP.

Get your copy today is all I can say.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Matthew H. Cooper on 1 Oct 2013
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Very poor quality for the most part. Obviously filmed from another screen. Soundtrack ropey. Other reviews are positve, so perhaps there are rip-off copies around.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By michael john madine on 21 Nov 2012
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Fascxinating film be Leni Riefenstahl,one of the worlds all time great directors,who also made "Triumph of the Will"and "Olympia",her incomparable fiklm of the 1936 Berlin Olympics. the intriguing thing about this film,is not just the historical storyline,which needs no recounting here,but the fact that Adolf Hitler,one of the worlds most dynamic,persuasive,even inspirational ,political speakers,was a lousy actor,in my view anyway! Maybe it was just a case of a titanic ego having too much to lose to be seen fumbling through a part.Anyway,Riefenstahl never tried to get him to do it again,everything else was just "Candid"
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By WW2 Buff on 7 May 2012
Format: DVD
I have bought other editions before this one and this is by far the preferred edition.

gone is the pixalation and freezing of picture that's hounded me on another studios copy of this movie.

I have reasonable grasp of German and the subtitling is very good compared to some of the literal translations one sometimes sees on these things that have obviously been done by some third world translator with no knowledge of the subject matter. It is clear from the translation that the translator(s) had a good knowledge of the topic.

Well worth the £3 extra pounds I paid for this edition. Case insert says its a limited edition of 1,000 copies, (not sure how true this is) but regardless I would get it sooner rather than later as its he best copy by far I have seen.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 14 reviews
24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
The original Leni Riefenstahl documentary 18 Feb 2005
By Max Sebastian - Published on
Format: DVD
I had read for many years that this film was considered lost and was surprised to see it offered on Amazon. I purchased a copy immediately and wanted to be the first to comment on it. The film is historically the first documentary effort of one of the world's foremost documentarians. It is said that she had little time to prepare for the film but the final product was nevertheless quite well executed. Apparently she had deposited a print of the film at some university in England and it was not located until shortly before her death. So unfortunately she never knew her first "rally film" had been discovered. The film is identical to Triumph of the Will in many ways except it has a rougher edge to it. Maybe what you would expect from an early Spielberg or Scorsese, i.e. genius in the making. This film apparently set the standard for all Nazi propaganda films that would follow it. The early views of Nuremberg rally sites are fascinating. The Stormtroopers are in their early uniforms and cheering Ernst Rohm who was later liquidated in the Night of the Long Knives. There is one fascinating scene where Hitler Youth Leader von Schirach actually accidentally knocks Hitler's hat from the podium, right in front of Hitler. Hitler takes it in stride. This scene must have escaped Riefenstahl's keen editing eye. There is the original trailer for the film in the features and there is also a short film "Wort und Tat" from an equally controversial director, Dr Fritz Hippler, and this is apparently his first documentary as well. If you have Triumph of the Will, you must see this film, if for no other reason than to see how Triumph of the Will turned out so well, it was a remake! That is my opinion of course, but I believe that had she not had the experience of the first film she would never have done the magnificent job she did on Triumph of the Will.
20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
By S. Kerr - Published on
Format: DVD
This truly is the holy grail for students of National Socialist Germany in particular and World War 2 generally. Long thought to have been lost to history some determined researchers managed to unearth this movie gem and have it available on DVD...Bravo.

Anyone who is anyone has Triumph of the Will in their Collection but Riefenstahl herself did not know that a copy of this movie still existed so you need to get it before they sell out.

I got my copy and finding it to be Region 1 only had to go out and buy a multi region DVD Player,(I'm based in England) despite the expense I WAS NOT DISAPPOINTED.

I could have done with this DVD whilst at University studying origins of WW2 and if your a student of history you will NEED to buy this DVD. I am no great student of film technique but again due to the rarity and the genius of Riefenstahl and her methods of movie making which are still considered amongst the best ever I would recommend those studying Film/Photographer to make sure they get a copy or at the very least get their Library to buy a copy.

All in all some may deride it as another piece of Nazi propaganda, nonetheless judge for yourself, you WILL NOT BE DISAPPINTED.
21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
The unfilm! 18 Jun 2005
By M. G Watson - Published on
Format: DVD
In 1513, Niccolo Machiavelli wrote: "From this a general rule is drawn which never or rarely fails; that he who is the cause of another becoming powerful is ruined; because that predominancy has been brought about either by astuteness or else by force, and both are distrusted by him who has been raised to power."

Leni Riefenstahl's "Der Sieg des Glaubens" is an excellent, if unwitting, testament to this brutal truth of politics. Commissioned by Adolf Hitler in 1933, just after he assumed the chancellorship of Germany, "Victory of Faith" was meant to commemorate the Nazi "seizure of power." Aside from Hitler, it prominently features many of the men who were instrumental its victory: but none more so than SA Chief of Staff Ernst Rohm. Rohm, standing side-by-side with Hitler in many of the scenes, clearly enjoys a special status even among the Nazi elite. And this is as it should be, for without Rohm and his SA, Hitler would not have been standing on the podium at all.

Rohm, a pudgy, scar-faced ex-army captain and political intriguer, had been instrumental in supply arms for the Nazi's failed 1923 Putsch attempt: he also served as an early commander of the SA, the Nazi Party's famed storm troopers. For a time he fell out with Hitler and worked as a mercenary in South America; but Hitler, who had difficulty keeping the SA under control, eventually realized that Rohm alone could keep the brownshirts on their leashes. He recalled Rohm, designated him the "Stabschef der SA" or chief of staff, and granted him plenary powers to reorganize the storm troops and bring them into line with the Party's (meaning Hitler's) ultimate aims.

Rohm was brilliantly successful and vastly expanded the SA into a force of some two million men. He conquered the streets and beer halls of Germany for Hitler, and was literally the bludgeon by which Hitler thrashed his way into power. For his pains, Rohm expected both he and his SA to be well compensated. And therein lay the problem.

Rohm was blunt-talking, crude, and revolutionary in his aims.

He wanted to absorb the German army into the SA and create a "National Socialist Army" under his own command -- after, of course, he had purged its officer corps of its aristocrats. He longed for the "second revolution" which would see the end of the Junkers and bring radical socialist reforms in German industry and agriculture. Finally, he was openly homosexual. For all of these reasons, Rohm made both the Nazis and the German army very nervous.

Hitler too eventually came to see his friend and comrade as a threat. The very guile and ruthlessness Rohm had shown during the Party's "time of struggle" now made him a danger to Hitler's person. And so, less than a year after Riefenstahl shot "Victory of Faith" Hitler shot Ernst Rohm. By that time he had worked himself up into believing the SA had actually been planning a putsch against him, and in a fit of rage he ordered all references to Rohm obliterated. Thus, "Victory of Faith" went on the bonfire, ultimately replaced by "Triumph of the Will" (which was filmed a year later). Only a single copy of "Victory" left "accidentally on purpose" in Britain before the war, survived. Lucky for us, because the film is a gold mine of never-before-seen visuals of many top Nazis, and a good snapshot of the pecking order of the Nazi Party prior to the Night of the Long Knives. The black-uniformed Himmler (along with Sepp Dietrich) are then nothing more than praetorian guards; they don't even get to stand on the platform!

Compared to her later "Triumph," Riefenstahl's "Victory of Faith" is somewhat crude and rough around the edges. This may reflect Leni's inexperience, or it may reflect the fact that the Nazis were not yet firmly in the saddle in Germany and their sense of pagentry was not quite fully developed. Watching Hitler and his cronies celebrate their victory, one gets the sense of an underdog team dazedly celebrating in the clubhouse after an improbable win. They stormed the what?

The answer to that question came a year later, when Rohm was in Stadelheim Prison, awaiting his execution. His mood was philisophical. "All revolutions," he told a visitor a few hours before he was shot, "devour their children."

Machiavelli couldn't have said it any better.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Incredible and fascinating example of early Riefenstahl 3 April 2005
By J. Nelson - Published on
Format: DVD
Incredible and interesting example of Leni Riefenstahl's first attempt at documentary film making. Why did she try to cover this film up? In the documentary by Ray Mueller she becomes physically violent toward the interviewer when this film is mentioned. The film really gives the viewer a fresh perspective on Nazi Germany in Hitler's first year in power. The DVD is very well produced, with liner notes, the original trailer for the film and a short film by Fritz Hippler. After seeing this film you will never see Triumph of the Will in the same way again. She used the same cameramen, same sound people, same composer Herbert Windt and the main characters are of course the same except for the omnipresent SA leader Ernst Rohm. He is literally presented as the #2 man and this film was released only a few months before Hitler had him assassinated. Again its an incredible film and any film student or historian will need this in their film collection! If the option were available I would give it 10 stars!
15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
Fascinating Film ,,, DISAPPOINTING DVD TREATMENT 21 Oct 2007
By Mr. Film Guy - Published on
Format: DVD
Victory of Faith is certainly a fascinating film, especially for students of Riefenstahl's filmmaking techniques or for students of the period. Since this film was thought lost, and was unavailable to so long, even seeing it at all is like finding treasure.

Unfortunately, the treatment that the DVD presentation received at the hands of the DVD makers is sloppy at best and absolutely maddening at worst.

Most maddening is the fact that they have their name ("A&M") in a bar at the upper left of the screen for the entire first 7 to 8 minutes of the film, and ---as if that weren't bad enough--- they have the words ("Copyright 2003") in a bar --at the same time!-- at the bottom left, during the same ENTIRE first 7 to 8 minutes of the film. That's two notices at the same time for the entire 7-8 minutes.

This is especially offputting because it is the first 8 minutes of the film (the Nuremberg "prologue") which is the most beautiful, lyrical part of the film. It is during those 8 minutes that Riefenstahl can wax poetic as we see the sights of Nuremberg and the preparations for the rally.

The film print which was discovered in Britain reportedly had this first sequence missing, and it says on the box that the DVD is presenting the British print of the film.

Evidently, therefore, the DVD producers had to specially obtain this first sequence from another source, and edit it into their presentation (which is appreciated). HOWEVER, in doing so they have added two thick black strips on the screen in two different places, continually and at the same time, (which, in the aggregate, probably amount to almost 1/4 of the screen space) giving their name and copyright notice.

This is infuriating and inexcusable! (I wish I could show you a frame capture). It is completely distracting.

Obviously, they put it in two places on the screen and very prominently in large type in order to keep someone from creating a "letterboxing" copy which excludes their notices. But it is unfortunate that they did not just "ghost" it in at the bottom, as cable TV stations routinely do with their logos nowadays. But, no, this is much more than that. It is two large thick strips on the screen, both of which remain distractingly present throughout the entire prologue.

I have never been so disappointed in a content-related decision by a DVD manufacturer. The most beautiful part of the film (and the part where Riefenstahl can show her editing technique off the most easily) is really pretty much RUINED for the viewer.

Yes, you can get an idea of what's going on, but there is the constant distraction of not ONE, but TWO continual copyright notices. This is a shameful treatment of the film!

Secondly, as if that weren't enough, there is another problem. There are no chapter divisions during the film. The 61 minute film is one big "chapter" on the DVD. Therefore, if you as a viewer or film student wish to navigate to a sequence near the end, you must fast-forward through the program in order to get there. Since Victory of Faith (Der Sieg Des Glaubens) was clearly divided up into sequences, it seems lazy and uncaring in the extreme of the DVD producers not to have at least put chapter divisions at those clear sequences.

A third problem is that the opening credits of the film (just the credits, mind you) are obviously taken from a very bad slow-play VHS copy with poor sync. The picture is fuzzy and jumpy and losing framing. It looks as if someone took an old camcorder and shot the titles off of a movie screen (which they may indeed have done!). Perhaps this was the best that could be done if the title sequence does not survive in better quality, but it's a real shame, as it starts the whole presentation off with a poor quality image (although the overall image quality gets better).

What is so maddening about all of this is that we KNOW that beautiful, pristine footage of this film exists because it was used in the documentary THE WONDERFUL HORRIBLE LIFE OF LENI REIFENSTAHL (MACH DER BILDER). There, the image quality of Victory of Faith is beautiful and glowing. Here, on this DVD, the image quality overall is "okay", but not nearly of the quality of the clips in WONDERFUL HORRIBLE LIFE. Plus, there are the problems with the extreme overbearing copyright notice, lack of proper chaptering, and extremely poor quality title sequence.

All in all, if you really need to see this film, this copy is "acceptable", but don't be expecting the quality of Synapse's TRIUMPH OF THE WILL (which was beautifully restored and presented), and don't be expecting the quality of the clips seen in WONDERFUL HORRIBLE LIFE. And be prepared to have the prologue ruined for you, as a viewer, by the blatant and extreme huge copyright notices.

I don't understand the DVD company going to the trouble to obtain, author to DVD, and market a rare film, and then treating it so SHAMEFULLY in it's presentation.

Overall, I'd give the film itself four stars, but this DVD presentation 1/2 star.

Bottom Line: mixed emotions. It is wonderful to be able to see this long-lost film which many of us thought we'd never see, and to have it in DVD form which can be reviewed and repeatedly studied; yet it is absolutely maddening to see it given so shabby a presentation on this particular DVD release.
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