Director Helke Sander is cleaning house. As she roams through her home and archive, she looks back on her life and work. Her stay in Finland during her marriage to Finnish writer Markku Lahtela opened her eyes to the possibility of more equal relationships between women and men. On her return to Berlin she initiated the New German Women’s Movement and began making films. The selected film clips offer a fascinating glimpse into post-War German society and Sander’s position in it as a woman, mother, artist and activist.
Sander became a leading voice of her generation. As a filmmaker, she tackled subjects avoided by the mainstream establishment—as witnessed by her documentaries Liberators Take Liberties, on the rape of German women by Soviet troops at the end of the Second World War, and The Germans and Their Men, in which the director calls German men to account for their actions. And in her highly personal feature film Redupers, where Sander plays herself as a single mother.
She’s an intriguing personality who doesn’t accept a reductionist characterization of herself as solely a feminist: “As a citizen, I am a feminist, and as an artist, I go along with any nonsense.”