Günter Grass


Length: 43 min
Format: HD 16:9
Language: German
Directed by: Dagmar Wittmers
TV co-producer: NDR/ARD
Year: 2011

“Grimms’ Words” – the new novel by Günter Grass was published in the autumn of 2010. Grass doesn’t let go of his works once they are printed; he accompanies them for a while, until something new grabs his attention. It is during this time that we peer over his shoulder. There is no rest, even when there are no discussions planned with his editor, and no proofs to be checked. The 83-year-old is not only an eloquent man of letters and an idiosyncratic graphic artist and sculptor, but still an unflinching critic of our times, relishing public encounters. This contemporaneity forms the narrative thread of the film.

His biography is related in the form of inserts, and connections are made between the fictitious, imaginatively crafted autobiography and flashbacks using documentary material. Why did Grass the writer, on an international level, come to symbolise German post-war literature like no other? What drove him to such success? Where can these moments be located in his personal history? New filmed conversations with him pick up themes, comment on them, develop them further. And current events and observations are also important, helping us discover Grass the person.

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