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Yesterday Girl (Abschied von Gestern)

Yesterday Girl

Anita G. is a young East German woman who comes to West Germany in hopes of a better life. With no real home and no job, she gets into trouble with the law when she steals and is sent to prison. After her sentence, she has difficulty adjusting to life in a new society. Her probation officer tries to help her, but Anita fails in every job, continues to lie and steal, and becomes a wandering gypsy. She then falls in love with a civil servant and feels a sense of security with him, until she is recognized on the street one day by a woman she betrayed. The woman forces Anita to admit her guilt. Eventually her relationship to the civil servant becomes a burden to him. Anita becomes pregnant, but is cast away by her married lover. Although he likes her, he realizes that he cannot really help her. Homeless and unable to deal with it all, she voluntarily goes to prison to find a shelter to have her baby.

Alexander Kluge was born in Halberstadt in 1932. He studied Law, History and Choral Music, completing his doctorate in 1956. He trained at CCC Films (including a time with Fritz Lang) and began making shorts in 1960. Kluge was one of the initiators of the Oberhausen Manifesto in 1962. Also in 1962, he became the director of the Institute of Film in Ulm, and established his own production company Kairos Film in 1963. His other films include, among others, The Artists Under The Big Top: Perplexed (Die Artisten in der Zirkuskuppel: ratlos, 1968) - winner of a Golden Lion in Venice 1968 and the German Film Award 1969, In Danger and Dire Distress, the Middle of the Road Leads to Death (In Gefahr und groesster Not bringt der Mittelweg den Tod, 1974), The Female Patriot (Die Patriotin, 1979) and many more. Kluge is also a writer and received the Heinrich Kleist Prize in 1986 and the Lessing Prize in 1990. Since 1988, he has produced several cultural programs for television, and in 1992 received the Adolf Grimme Award in Gold for his TV-essay Das Goldene Vlies und die Catch-penny-Drucke in Blei. Alexander Kluge lives in Munich.
Genre Drama
Category Feature
Year of Production 1965
Director Alexander Kluge
Screenplay Alexander Kluge
Cinematography Thomas Mauch, Edgar Reitz
Beate Mainka-Jellinghaus
Cast Peter Staimmer, Kaethe Ebner, Josef Kreindl, Ado Riegler, Palma Falck, Edith Kuntze-Pellogio, Hans Korte, Alexandra Kluge, Hans Brammer
Producer Alexander Kluge
Production Companies Independent-Film/Berlin, Kairos Film/Munich
Length 88 min
Format 35 mm, b&w
Original Version
Subtitled Versions English, French, Spanish
Sound Technology Optical
Festivals Venice 1966, Moscow 2004 (Retrospective), Pusan 2004, Kolkata 2019
Awards 8 awards in Venice 1966 including the Special Jury Prize, German Film Award 1967