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Pedestrians Beware!

Pedestrians Beware!

Everyone interested in Vienna should stroll along Fleischmarkt and Griechengasse; rarely is so much history concentrated into just 400 metres. From the Babenbergs to Billy Wilder this short walk takes a long view into the city’s colourful past.   Kornhäusel and coffee Fleischmarkt is an ancient street first documented in 1220. The name recalls the […]

Out of Sync

Out of Sync

With all the rave reviews, the film Brokeback Mountain had been a must-see when I finally caught a German-language version in a Vienna cinema. A German-dubbed western is an unsettling experience. Phrases like “I reckon”, and “I just can’t quit you!” spoken in lazy western drawls are more than lost in translation; they are just […]

Book Review: Erich Wolfgang Korngold

Book Review: Erich Wolfgang Korngold

“The genuine artist creates at a distance from his own time, even for a time beyond,” wrote the composer Erich Wolfgang Korngold in October, 1955, in the foreword to the book Faith in Music by protégé Ulric Devaré. It was, in fact, Korngold’s last published essay, written as a reflection on his life as a […]

I’m Chicago, Hear me Roar: The Allure of the 1920s

I’m Chicago, Hear me Roar: The Allure of the 1920s

There is something about the roaring twenties that beguiles trend-stragglers; it’s hard not to be captivated by its lawlessness and sense of freedom, the lure of shady extravagance. Speeding down an empty highway, hopping a freight, all that matters is a good time and staying out of jail. It’s all so far from the conventional […]

Humble and ‘in Awe’

Humble and ‘in Awe’

  Michael Haneke and Christoph Waltz don’t have all that much in common. One is a seasoned director, a believer in artistic filmmaking, who casually accepted his golden statuette in Hollywood on 24 February. Two of his previous films had been nominated, but Amour was the first to put Haneke on the stage of the […]

Book Review: Hedy’s Folly, by Richard Rhodes

Two-Part Invention When composer George Antheil first met Hedy Lamarr in Hollywood in August 1940, he agreed with Max Reinhardt that she was, indeed, “the most beautiful woman in the world.” His “eyeballs sizzled,” he wrote a few years later in his memoir Bad Boy of Music – the Austrian actress was even more beautiful […]

Walking Hollywood

OK, so three weeks ago, I officially moved to Los Angeles. It is not that I wanted to live in Los Angeles. Or work in movies. I fell in love. With a man who wants to live in Los Angeles. And works in movies. Life has its own plans. For a European, the U.S. is… […]

The Music Man

The Music Man

The legends of Hollywood are full of stories about Erich Wolfgang Korngold and Max Steiner, the two Viennese composers who dominated film music for nearly three decades from its beginning with Steiner’s score for King Kong and Korngold’s minor masterpiece the Sea Hawk that was held on a par with Wagner. Korngold the “serious” composer, […]

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