DGE on DVD 1

The Great Evolution

Documentary, 89 Min., © French Exit, Germany 2015
Directed, filmed and produced by Matthias Luthardt / Editor: Gregor Bartsch / Graphic designer: Joachim Bartsch, arc gestaltung

THE GREAT EVOLUTION is an encounter with a man who dedicated his life since the 1960’s to creating an autonomous world in an old vicarage in Upper Bavaria, where action art and existential philosophy preside over everyday life. The vicarage quickly established itself as a meeting place for people searching for meaning and new experiences in their lives. Among them, German actress Hanna Schygulla, top model Veruschka and her mother Gottliebe Lehndorff, widow of an executed co-conspirator in a plot against Hitler. The film explores Fritz Schranz´s unique Super8 archive and shows the 85-year-old man reflecting, thinking outside the box and of course – in action.

Purchase the DVD online here.

foto von filmaufnahmen

Peace Counts en Côte d’Ivoire

Documentary, 23 min., Ivory Coast 2009, for the Advanced Journalism Academy and the Goethe-Institut Côte d’Ivoire.
Directing, sound and 2nd camera: Matthias Luthardt; DOP: Jan Zabeil.
Produced by FRENCH EXIT and Oval Filmemacher 2009.

The film follows the project „Peace Counts“ on its tour through Ivory Coast. A media project which identifies people around the world who have made successful attempts to resolve crises and conflicts.

More informations

– Interview with Matthias Luthardt (in French) on the Website of the Association of African film critics
– SPIEGEL 35/2009: „The Power of Words“ by Fiona Ehlers. Excerpt:
“… The Germans need light for the show to go on. They drive a Mercedes van belonging to the Goethe Institute into the middle of the square and aim the headlights at the stage. It could work. The show starts. It is called ‘Faiseurs de Paix,’ a kind of village theater with mobile radio show. A storyteller takes the stage, Fortuné, 48, a well-known actor from the capital Abidjan. He tells about a lawyer who frees innocent people from prisons and a woman raising 52 war orphans, along with a project that disarms former rebels and finds them work and a teacher who resolves conflicts between nomadic herders and farmers. And because there is no electricity and no big screen, Tilman Wörtz, 36, a reporter from southern Germany, walks around with his laptop showing photos to illustrate the stories. Ivorian photographers took the pictures and Ivorian journalists wrote the accompanying features, with training from Wörtz and his colleagues at Zeitenspiegel. The central idea is development aid through the power of traditional narrative, the power of words in times filled with conflict, a project as parable about what journalism can achieve.”
PDF-Download of the article (in German)

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24h Berlin

Episodic documentary, co-directed by 80 German filmmakers, 24 h, Germany 2009, ZeroOneFilmproduction / rbb-Arte. Artistic Director: Volker Heise.

Episode „Social court“: Director: M. Luthardt, DOP: Christian Marohl, Sound: Andreas Prescher.

More informations: www.24hberlin.tv.

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Jesus Loves You (Jesus liebt Dich)

2007, documentary, Co-director with Michaela Kirst, Lilian Franck and Robert Cibis, Oval Film


In the summer of 2006, more than 10,000 Christians from around the world have travelled to Germany at the World Championship Soccer Tournament – to enhance the Bible-true of the ,free world’. The tales of these faithful melt together into a haunting micro-cosmos of a global attempt to bring humanity closer to Jesus.

58. Internationale Filmfestspiele Berlin 2008, Perspektive Deutsches Kino
Hot Docs Toronto 2008
Doc/Fest Sheffield 2008
48. Krakow Film Festival 2008

“Informative, enjoyable, and explosive. Entertainment with attitude.” (TIP – Berlin)
“Germany, a tale of freedom.” (Berliner Morgenpost)
“A great documentary moment.” “The humor of ‘Jesus Loves You is a result of the collision between rigid religious beliefs and a public pumped up on sports, games and spectacle.”
(Berliner Zeitung)

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We need hobbies (Menschen brauchen Hobbies)

2004, documentary, 59 min., HFF Potsdam
In summer 2003, director Matthias Luthardt and cameraman Paul Hadwiger, follow three couples who, as video amateurs, make their own TV-programme for the “Open Channel”, entitled “Cooking and Baking With Adèle,” “Herman’s Hyde Park ” and “Keep it Country.”
A laconic study of German subculture.


International Documentary Film Festival (IDFA) Amsterdam 2004


„So many filmmakers look far away, to exotic locations for their subjects. This filmmaker found a fascinating story on his own doorstep. He also takes a compassionate approach to his subjects, he is full of respect for these everyday people in the suburbs. It is a well told story, funny, compassionate, and it is about TV. People making their own TV programmes is really what documentary making is all about – telling their own stories.“ (Eric Gandini)

Catalog text International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam

Interview with Matthias Luthardt and documentary filmmaker Eric Gandini, President of the Silver Wolf Jury IDFA 2004 (pdf)

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Merry Christmas (Oh du fröhliche!)

2003, 32 min. A family documentary by Robert Cibis, Paul Hadwiger, Sebastian Ko, Sören Senn. Montage: Katrine Granlund. Conceived by: Matthias Luthardt. An Oval Filmemacher Production.

They are about 30 years old and make films. Films with a big crew, big images, big intentions. But this time everything is different. This time they take the cameras themselves and film what they have never dared to film before: Christmas with their parents. A documentary trip through and on Christmas eve. Drawn alarmingly from real life.

More informations: www.oval-film.de

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Straight ahead! (Abgefahren!)

2002, documentary, 20 min., HFF Potsdam / risingstar

When blind people drive cars… “How many mph do I have now?” …the driving instructors are fully stretched. “There are many turns here, aren’t there?”
A film about the sound of the car horn and the ecstasy of speed.

25. Rencontres Hengri Langlois, Poitiers 2002

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Sommerfeld plays Sommerfeld (Sommerfeld spielt Sommerfeld)

1999, documentary, 15 min., HFF Potsdam

Even at the age of 95, living legend Willy Sommerfeld goes to the movie theatre in order to accompany silent films on the piano – as he used to do in the Roaring Twenties. “Sommerfeld plays Sommerfeld” documents a premiere: the silent movie pianist accompanies a short film starring himself and his wife as main characters.

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