The Total Family

In 1981, Ernst Schmidt Jr. produced his first narrative feature film, based on the novel "The Merovingians or the total family", an absurdist parody written by Austria´s great author Heimito von Doderer (1896-1966). The film "is anything but boring, rather it is staged in an original, fast-paced manner and is refreshingly anti-perfectionist. It tells the story of Baron Childerich III who became his very own father, grandfather, father-in-law and son-in-law by virtue of a well-conceived strategy of marriage and adoption - according to the motto ‘La famille c´moi’.“ (Paul Gumhalter)

The experimental background of the filmmaker is recognizable in the theme as well as his cinematic treatment of the material, visible among other things in the episodic structure of the film and how certain scenes resemble ´Happenings´ (stipulated in some chapters of the original novel, in which Doderer anticipated ideas later developed by the Actionists and protagonists of Concept Art.) (Joachim Riedl. "Der österreichische Avantgarde- und Undergroundfilm". In Linda Bilda Ernst Schmidt Jr. Drehen sie Filme, aber keine Filme! Filme und Filmtheorie 1964–1987. Wien: Triton-Verlag, 2001)

Orig. Title
Die totale Familie
Year
1981
Country
Austria
Duration
86 min
Category
Avantgarde/Arts
Orig. Language
german
Downloads
Credits
Director
Ernst Schmidt jr.
Cinematography
Helmut Pirnat
Music
Hans Kann
Editing
Herbert Baumgartner
Sound
Walter Funda
Editing
Gertraud Luschützky
Continuity
Günter Janicek, Ernst Schmidt jr.
Actor/Actress
Bodo Hell, Wendy Nagler, Friedrich Geyrhofer, Herwig Kempinger, Elfriede Gerstl, Armin Akermann, John Weiler, VALIE EXPORT, Franz West
Art Direction
Jean Veenenbos
Costumes
Renée Diamant
Production
Signal-Film
Assistant Director
Helmut Pirnat
Available Formats
35 mm (Distribution Copy)
Aspect Ratio
1:1,66
Sound Format
mono
Frame Rate
24 fps
Color Format
colour
Digital File (prores, h264) (Distribution Copy)
Aspect Ratio
16:9
Sound Format
mono
Frame Rate
25 fps
Color Format
colour