Leni: The Life and Work of Leni Riefenstahl

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Vintage Books, 2008 - Biography & Autobiography - 386 pages
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Leni Riefenstahl, the woman best known as "Hitler's filmmaker," is one of the most controversial personalities of the twentieth century. Her story is one of huge talent and huger ambition, one that probes the sometimes blurred borders dividing art and beauty from truth and humanity. Two of her films, Olympia and Triumph of the Will, are universally regarded as among the greatest and most innovative documentaries ever made, but they are also insidious glorifications of Hitler and the Third Reich. Relying on new sources--including interviews with her colleagues and intimate friends, as well as on previously unknown recordings of Riefenstahl herself--biographer Bach untangles the truths and lies behind this gifted woman's lifelong self-vindication as an apolitical artist who claimed she knew nothing of the Holocaust and denied her complicity with the criminal regime she both used and sanctified.--From publisher description.

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Leni: the life and work of Leni Riefenstahl

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German director Leni Riefenstahl (1902-2003) had 101 years to construct her legend, which she did in part with an autobiography that was roundly denounced as self-serving and generally a tissue of ... Read full review


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About the author (2008)

Steven Bach is the author of two previous biographies, Marlene Dietrich: Life and Legend and Dazzler: The Life and Times of Moss Hart. He was in charge of worldwide production for United Artists, where he was involved in such films as Raging Bull, Manhattan, The French Lieutenant's Woman, and Heaven's Gate, about which he wrote the bestseller Final Cut. He teaches at Bennington College and Columbia University and divides his time between New England and Europe.

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