Leni Riefenstahl-Documenting evil

History of Sorts

Leni Riefenstahl

The story of  Leni Riefenstahl has always intrigued me. Although she was a willing and pivotal tool in the Nazi propaganda machine. She did witness crimes and evil but was yet somehow able to distance herself from it.

Leni Riefenstahl (Helene Riefenstahl) was a German dancer, actress, and film director best known for her imposing propaganda films in support of the National Socialist (Nazi) Party.

By her own account, the advent of World War II and the rapid escalation of violence under the Nazi regime had an unfavorable effect on both Riefenstahl and her career. Early in the Polish campaign, an incident seemed to have shaken Riefenstahl’s confidence in the movement she had glorified in cinematic images. While accompanying German troops near Konskie, the filmmaker witnessed the execution of Polish civilians shot in retaliation for a partisan attack on German troops. Riefenstahl apparently left her filming that day in order to make a personal…

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