The Forgotten War – San Gusmè and the Theatre of Remembrance

Germany | 2014 | 88 min
German, Italian | Subtitles in English
Cinematography: Harald Schmuck
Distribution: Blaubart Film- Und Theaterproduktion GmbH
Editing: Jan Ruschke
Music: Hans P. Stroeer
Narration: Axel Milberg
Producer: Ulrich Waller
Sound: Mike Glöckner
Production: Blaubart Film- Und Theaterproduktion GmbH.


In 1944, toward the end of the Second World War, a group of women and children were massacred by German soldiers in a small Tuscan village. Seventy years later, the German-Italian theatre project Albicocche rosse [Red Apricots] revisits these brutal events. What do they say about the relationship between Germany and Italy, who were first allies and then enemies in this devastating conflict? What really happened that day in the village of San Gusmè? Beyond the violence and the logic behind the massacre, the film tells the story of daily life in the village under the occupation through the voices of those who live there today. More than 50 actors and musicians from Italy and Germany are involved in this collective project, setting aside their differences. Filmmakers Eduard Erne and Ulrich Waller, both closely involved in the project, document the tragic events of the past century and the process in this theatre of remembrance.


Eduard Erne

Born in Austria in 1958, Eduard Erne studied drama at the Max Reinhardt Seminar in Vienna. From 1983 to 1989, he performed as an actor at the Theater am Turm in Frankfurt and the Schauspielhaus in Vienna. In 1994, he directed his first documentary, Totschweigen (A Wall of Silence) on a Holocaust crime committed at the Austrian border. Since then, he has made documentaries for theatres and the television networks Norddeutscher Rundfunk and ARTE. He also works as an editor for the Swiss broadcaster Schweizer Radio und Fernsehen.
Filmography | Laila, Hala And Karima - A Year in Revolutionary Cairo (2012) ; Herrenkinder (Children Of The Masterrace) (2009) ; BirdPeople (2004) ; Indira's Diary (2000) ; Totschweigen (A Wall Of Silence), together with Margareta Heinrich (1994).

Ulrich Waller

Born in Tübingen, Germany in 1956, Ulrich Waller studied literature and history in Munich. He began his career in 1976 as an assistant director at the Schauspiel Frankfurt. Since 1979, he has directed some of Germany’s greatest theatre companies, in Cologne, Hamburg and Frankfurt. From 1995 to 2003, he was the artistic director of the Hamburger Kammerspiele, and since 2003 of the St. Pauli Theatre in Hamburg. In 2011, he directed the musical Hinterm Horizont, featuring the songs of German pop star Udo Lindenberg.
Filmography | Zwei Hamburger Jungs ? Biermann trifft Tukur (NDR) (2006) ; Ein satirischer Jahresrückblick (NDR) (2000-2009) ; Dichter in Hamburg (NDR) (1997-1999) ; Heimatabend, ein satirisch-musikalischer Jahresrückblick (NDR) (1990 ? 1999) ; Der geile Osten (NDR) (1990).

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Screenings playing this movie

Centre Canadien d’Architecture - Théâtre Paul-Desmarais
Screening # 65
The Forgotten War – San Gusmè and the Theatre of Remembrance
FIFA Grand Panorama

The Forgotten War – San Gusmè and the Theatre of Remembrance

Germany | 88 min | 2014

German, Italian | Subtitles in English