Germans and the Forest / FRG, commissioned by NDR Television

Perhaps the forest is not inherently more important to the Germans than it is to the citizens of other countries, such as the Swedes. It may simply be that the Germans happen to have more forests than the French, the English or the Italians. Be that as it may, the relationship between the Germans and “their” forest is sometimes sentimental and very frequently ambivalent.

The sentimental effect of the forest is reflected most clearly by artists from the era of Romanticism, while the ambivalence is clearly seen in the Germans’ present-day indignation regarding the slow death of their forests combined with their stubborn refusal to introduce speed limits on their motorways. In brief episodes, the film reports on the relationship of a broad variety of Germans to “their” forest and shows the significance of the German forest for the country's history, for its economy and for the way the Germans spend their leisure time. The film was created by Gülsel Özkan and Ludger Pfanz Filmproduktion as a coproduction with NDR, HR, 3sat and MDR.