Our Poster of the Month
Each month we will display a film poster from our extensive Collection to highlight obscure films and their original posters not well–known today.
This month's poster is one from 1939, Ewige Quelle / The Eternal Source.
This film was obscure enough not to have been even listed in the Indexes of Third Reich film histories written by Hull, Welch, Hoffmann, Leiser, Hake, Rentschler, Garden, or Giesen (English edition). However, it was covered over three full pages in Dorothea Hollstein's Antisemitische Filmpropaganda, ©1971, Verlag Dokumentation.
The farmers on the Lohhof, the largest farm in the area, are well known all around and have the highest prestige amongst their peers, not the least, because they never suffer any shortage of water. When in times of drought the water everywhere else has dried into nothingness, the water on the Lohhof is abundant and fresh. But one very dry summer, the drought comes to the Lohhof, too, and this time, the source of the water has dried up. And so, with diving rod in hand, one of the farm's old peasants goes on his merry little way to find a new source of water. At one point, the diving rod bends so strongly, that it almost slips out of the old man's hands. Convinced that there must be a huge source of water nearby, all the farmers of the Lohhof bend their backs to find the new well. They dig long, but they dig in vain: no water is found, only a strange sand, which is yellowish, shiny and flickers golden in the sun.
At this moment fool’s gold is found on the farm by a divining rod, manipulated by a dowser who has recently returned from South Africa. Crass materialism takes hold.
The dowser, Lusinger, hatches a plot by visiting a Jewish lawyer in the big city. The lawyer, as per Hollstein:
“talked the fool into a contract in which he himself is the winner, and gave him constant instructions on how Lusinger should deceive the poor farmers. The effort fails because Lusinger, in his squalor, also chases after the young farmer's bride and thus creates an opponent who finally finds out about him. When the gold fraud becomes evident, the lawyer forces his client to take rigorous action against the indentured farmers. But Lusinger does not want to wait for the dispute to be denied fairly, but rather takes up his supposed right himself. In the presence of the lawyer, a fight ensues between him and the son of the estate owner. The contestants are already separated from each other when the young farmer hits the yoke and kills his adversary: the healthy farmer's blood has prevailed. "
" The lawyer plays a seemingly secondary role in this story, he remains in the background as a wire–puller. In the few scenes in which he appears, he shows himself to be sly and cunning. In the face of the brawl, he backs off in disgust -– the cowardly Jew has no understanding of fisticuff arguments — he prefers to work with paragraphs. Although Wollinsky already reveals his non-Aryan origins by his appearance - dark hair, hooked nose, dogged expression - only the farmer woman recognises him as a Jew, because she still has the instinct of uneducated, simple people. Just as inconspicuously, when the Jew appears on the scene he disappears again from it: The court that acquits the farmer's son and issues an arrest warrant against the lawyer 'for fraud, forgery of documents, attempted and complete extortion.' "
We have in our Collection the original German poster shown above, as well as the cinema owner's promotion guide (Werberatschlag) and the German press-book.
The film remains forbidden today in Germany and Austria.