Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Are Germans Actually Super Quiet?

So, the other night we watched a movie called Shultze Gets the Blues. German film, about a retired miner (Shutlze) who gets into playing Zydeco music on his accordion. Kind of transcendental, I think, though I'm not sure what all that term implies. Lots of long shots of slow, everyday stuff happening. Anyway, the German people in the movie were all very, very quiet. Like in the one shot, where several pairs and trios of old men walk into a large room to play chess, and they're all perfectly silent.

I wondered whether people are actually like that in Germany, or if it was just a strange thing the filmmaker was doing to create a mood. Eventually Shultze comes to America and the contrast between the highly verbal and spontaneous Americans and the extreme social restraint seen in the scenes in Germany is very obvious. I guess I just find it hard to believe things are really like that over there.

Anyone who's been to Germany want to comment?

[Incidentally, if you want to watch the film, I do recommend it. But don't be fooled by the description on the back cover; it's a very sad, heart-wrenching movie.]

1 comment:

jenzai studio said...

Hmm... you know, I honestly can't remember! Surely I would remember if everyone had been eerily quiet, though, right? I don't think that sounds right. Perhaps a little quieter than Americans, but then, Americans are ridiculously loud. Maybe it really was significantly quieter there and that is why I liked it so much! I never could quite put my finger on what it was about Germany that resonated so significantly with me. It couldn't be the almost obsessive compulsive orderliness, that's for sure, though it did make for gorgeously maintained and immaculately clean public spaces...