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Waldheims Walzer

The Waldheim Waltz

Producer: Ruth Beckermann Film
Financing: Austrian production
Year: 2016
Grant amount: € 94.000
Category: Dokumentarfilm
Genre: documentary
Director: Ruth Beckermann
Writer: Ruth Beckermann
Release (AT): 05.10.2018

This is a film about lies and truth. About individual and collective consciousness. About the tangled web that Kurt Waldheim became ensnared in by concealing part of his biography. Despite his stellar career, crowned by his ten-year incumbency as UN General secretary, his persistent refusal to clarify his role during the war and the National Socialist era brought him into dire straits. In parallel with this, and intimately connected with it, the film is also about the denial in Austria’s collective memory. Austria was highly successful in practising the deception on itself and the world that it had been the first victim of the German Nazis. Despite the fact that a whole generation knew the truth, this image of innocence was serially reproduced in official speeches, books and Heimatfilms. This was successful in part because the surviving Jews who had been driven out of their country were largely prevented from returning and memories of them suppressed as far as possible.

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