Search - Wagner - Lohengrin (remastered) on DVD

Wagner - Lohengrin (remastered)
Wagner - Lohengrin
Actors: Peter Hofmann, Eva Marton, Leonie Rysanek, Leif Roar, John Macurdy
Director: August Everding
Genres: Indie & Art House, Music Video & Concerts, Musicals & Performing Arts
NR     2006     3hr 40min


Larger Image

Movie Details

Actors: Peter Hofmann, Eva Marton, Leonie Rysanek, Leif Roar, John Macurdy
Director: August Everding
Genres: Indie & Art House, Music Video & Concerts, Musicals & Performing Arts
Sub-Genres: Indie & Art House, DTS, Classical, Musicals
Studio: Deutsche Grammophon
Format: DVD - Color - Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 08/08/2006
Original Release Date: 01/01/1986
Theatrical Release Date: 00/00/1986
Release Year: 2006
Run Time: 3hr 40min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 2
SwapaDVD Credits: 2
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 2
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: German
Subtitles: English, Spanish, German, French
See Also:

Similar Movies


Movie Reviews

Levine's Wagner is what he does best.
tom h. | Greenport, NY | 06/14/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I am admittedly not familiar enough with Wagner or German opera to say that the cast in this production was great or not, but I'm familiar enough with James Levine's heavy treatment of his Italian productions, whether they be by Mozart, Verdi, Puccini, Donizetti, you name it, to call them "Wagnerian".

Unlike those where he seems to try to make the orchestra overshadow the singers with deep rumbling passages whether it be L'elisir D'amore or Don Giovanni, Levine is 100% with the music here.

The audience is as well. There is absolutely NO doubt in my mind that the same audience who favors these Wagner/Met/Levine productions here on Amazon and the audience in the house that night come from the same school of listening. They go INSANE for Rysanek as Ortud, who was great, yes, but this listener does not jump out of his seat for one well sung phrase, let alone......well you'll just have to watch the curtain calls.

Seriously though, this is an epic for anyone trying to break into Wagner without going through the Ring. I, for one want to get used to Wagner's music first before laying down the big money on that. BE WARNED Wagner is a slowly acquired taste! I'm still just getting used to it after growing up among people who think Wagner is as good, if not better than Mozart. This production of Lohengrin is a step in the right direction."
From another Wagner Newbie
R. Swanson | New Mexico | 05/20/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I'm just coming to Wagner...just saw the Ring Cycle where I fell in love with Peter Hoffman's all-to-brief appearance as Sigmund....and was happy to find this production. As a long time theater and film goer I approach opera differently than musicians do so bear that in mind as you read this. I do love, love, love the music but the over all emotional impact is more important to me than just the vocal quality of the singers.

This performance was wonderfully satisfying in every regard. At first I found Eva Marton quite a bit beyond the age of the virginal heroine (spoiled by all the movies I've seen) but her presence quickly grabbed me. She seemed to inhabit the character at a profound level, never even breaking at the confounded curtain calls. She also has glorious dimples on the few occasions where she was permitted to smile and I could see how she would win the heart of the Prince.

As I said, I fell in love with Peter Hoffman as Sigmund, where he appeared magnificently bare-chested, so I carried over my affection to his Lohengrin, even though his voice was perhaps a bit weak compared to the others. Some have commented on the corny costume but I thought he wore it well, including the Rod Stewart hairdo. He doesn't do a lot of "acting" but, like Marton, he thorougly inhabited the character. He is every bit the magical Prince Charming that all young girls dream of, silver boots and all. He doesn't have a lot of facial expression but his grief at Elsa's mistake comes across loud and clear, just through his being. The "number" where he exposed his other-wordly origins was very moving. I think that would be difficult to pull off in this day and age but his gravity and bearing really came across. I wish I could have seen him arrive on the swan...that would have been truly magical.

The staging was wonderful. The bridal chamber was charming and I could almost smell the flowers wound around the bedposts. Likewise, the alley where the Telramund and Ortrud conspired their evil deeds was appropriately bleak, dark and sinister. The famous wedding march, which we've all heard too many times, was so sweetly played that it seemed as fresh and innocent as it was meant to be.

The supporting cast was fine. Leonie Rysenek got huge ovations and was bombarded by flowers from her adoring Met followers, but I thought her performance was perhaps a little too over-the-top, screechy and even off-key at times. However she was playing a pushy, evil, power grabbing witch so perhaps her performance was appropriate for the role. Leif Roar (great name for a Nordic opera singer) was good as her conspiring husband. They certainly both looked appropriately haggard.

I enjoyed seeing James Levine conduct, and really liked seeing the wonderful horn section play. I think that one of the reasons I love Wagner is the use of the brass and percussion instruments. However I really do find their tradition of bringing the singers out after each act for a curtain call to be annoying. The drama is so deep and the singers are often so engaged in the emotions that it seems a shame to break the mood by this. Most of these singers stayed in character except for Ms. Rysanek who clearly enjoyed the loud ovations she got from her fan cluband and smiled broadly at the mid-performance curtain call. The Beyreuth Ring production didn't have this distraction and I found it much more fitting for the gravity of Wagner's operas to leave the curtain calls to the end. Again, comparing this to theater, I was wondering how it would play if actors came out and took a bow after each act.. Marlon Brando, smiling and bowing during Streetcar? Really distracting!

However it is definitely a good show and I recommend it to others who are just getting acquainted with Wagner."
From the Wagner Neophyte
A. Roth | Baltimore, MD | 01/13/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)

"With the only previous Wagner I had seen being Hollander {which, I still liked better} I decided to give "Mature" Wagner a shot with Lohengrin. I enjoyed this opera a great deal, though I could not watch it all in a single sitting. I watched the first two acts one day and the third the next. Some may scoff, but I think this is the way to go. I am not even sure that Wagner himself would think it was such a terrible idea...after all, be broke up the Ring, no?
I found the characters believable, and for once, the fact that a singer looked too "old" for the part (exactly how much older is Elsa than Gottfried?!) didn't bother me. Actually, I sort of liked her as a little past peak, made her virginal-fantasy desperation more sincere, as far as I was concerned.
I think I understand the complexity of Wagner now too...his music really does not lend itself to "highlight" albums of solo arias. As opposed to Verdi or Puccini though, I am not sure that I would enjoy listening to Wagner on CD without first having seen the opera to have associational memories with. Because it really is more continuous melody, I think it would lose a lot when not accompanied by staging and acting. From what I have read, that is probably what Wagner too would think. For him it certainly was not "all about the music".
Like other reviewers I was put off by Lohengin's cheesy costume (especially the silver platform boots and the big 70's hair), with that though, I found this to be an enjoyable version to watch. Next up, Tritsan.