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Fire Rider (Feuerreiter)

Fire Rider
Scene from "Fire Rider" (photo courtesy of Progress Film)

Frankfurt 1796. The talented and handsome poet Friedrich Hoelderlin takes up a position as private tutor in the banking family of Gontard, a position his friend and patron Baron Isaac von Sinclair had arranged for him. Sinclair loves Hoelderlin and wants to have him close by. It is not long before Hoelderlin and the wife of his employer, Susette, fall in love with each other. Their relationship doesn't remain hidden to the jealous Sinclair, and he informs Gontard of the wife's affair. Hoelderlin has to leave the house without knowing who was responsible for the end of his love affair. Sinclair takes Hoelderlin in and looks after him when the first signs of his later madness make themselves felt. Susette and Hoelderlin meet secretly once a month, for an hour. Hoelderlin's most beautiful poems are written during this difficult time. However, nobody wants to acknowledge his bold way of writing. Torn back and forth between his passion for poetry, his love for Susette and Sinclair who also still desires him, Hoelderlin loses everything.
Genre Drama
Category Feature
Year of Production 1997
Director Nina Grosse
Screenplay Susanne Schneider
Cinematography Egon Werdin
Patricia Rommel
Biber Gullatz, Eckes Malz
Cast Nina Hoss, Ulrich Matthes, Martin Feifel, Marianne Denicourt, Ulrich Mühe
Producer Juergen Haase
Production Company Provobis Film/Berlin, in co-production with ARTE/Paris, Cinema, La Sept, Flach Film, Paris, ORF/Vienna, SWF/Baden-Baden, Tor Film, Warsaw, ARTE, Polish Television/Warsaw
Runtime 130 min
Format 35 mm, color
Sound Technology Dolby SRD
Festivals Montreal 1998, Mar del Plata 1998, Trieste 1999, Berlin 1999 (German Films), Créteil 99
With backing from German Federal Film Board / FFA Filmförderungsanstalt, FilmFernsehFonds Bayern, MOIN Filmförderung Hamburg Schleswig-Holstein, MFG Baden-Württemberg, BMI, Eurimages
German Distributor PROGRESS Film-Verleih/Berlin

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