Wilhelm Tell (1933/34)


Personal opinion: Conrad reprises here the role of the evil Gessler, the enemy of the Swiss hero Wilhelm Tell. Conrad made the silent version in 1923, even if this time he has a slightly different interpretation of the character. For example, he has no love interest (in the silent version was Erna Morena), and he is much more preoccupied by his authority in the land and by the menacing popularity of Tell, whom he tries to punish and eventually kill. But, in the end, he is the one who dies, after Tell kills him with an arrow. What is important to know about this film is that shortly after the filming, Connie was taken by the Gestapo and remained under house arrest for several weeks, until his wife sent immediately a doctor who released him through the British legation. It was an abuse that affected Connie and his rapport with the Fatherland (where he would never return), even if he didn’t give up and made the film that Hitler was so much against to, “Jew Süss”. His experience during “Wilhelm Tell” was a very tough one, a nightmare to any human being, much more to an artist with sense and sensibility like Connie.


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