German National Cinema is the first comprehensive history of German film from its origins to the present. In this new edition, Sabine Hake discusses film-making in economic, political, social, and cultural terms, and considers the contribution of Germany's most popular films to changing definitions of genre, authorship, and film form.

The book traces the central role of cinema in the nation’s turbulent history from the Wilhelmine Empire to the Berlin Republic, with special attention paid to the competing demands of film as art, entertainment, and propaganda. Hake also explores the centrality of genre films and the star system to the development of a filmic imaginary.

This fully revised and updated new edition will be required reading for everyone interested in German film and the history of modern Germany.

chapter |7 pages


chapter 1|19 pages

Wilhelmine cinema 1895–1919

chapter 2|37 pages

Weimar cinema 1919–33

chapter 3|28 pages

Third Reich cinema 1933–45

chapter 4|35 pages

Postwar cinema 1945–61

chapter 5|26 pages

East German cinema 1961–90

chapter 6|37 pages

West German cinema 1962–90

chapter 7|34 pages

Post-unification cinema 1990–2007