Gets new twist but keeps the kitsch
'The Trapp Family' is certainly one of the German movies which had the most after-effects in Hollywood. Now a remake tells the story of the singing 'Sound of Music' family from a different angle. Will it work in 2015?
In 1956, the film "The Trapp Family," directed by Wolfgang Liebeneiner and starring Ruth Leuwerik and Hans Holt, became one of the most popular films in post-war Germany. The film also had a sequel, "The Trapp Family in America," which was released in 1958.
Most notably, the story of this singing family became a legend in the US, as it was turned into a Broadway musical and an extremely successful film, both called "The Sound of Music."
"The Trapp Family" was based on the memoir of Maria-Augusta von Trapp, "The Story of the Trapp Family Singers," which describes how the family escaped from Austria during Nazi rule to live in the US. The book became a bestseller.
A few years later, Broadway producers became interested in the story. The musical "The Sound of Music" premiered in New York in 1959. It ran for almost 1,500 performances. Then a London production of the musical was just as successful. The story has fans in many other countries, too, especially in Asia.
Fifty years later, a German remake is being released, and premiered Monday (02.11.15) in the Gloria Palast in Munich, which is where the original film was also screened for the first time.
Filmmaker Ben Verbong tells a slightly different version of the well-known story. In the original film in 1956, the memories of the Maria von Trapp led the narrative: This time it is the oldest daughter, Agatha von Trapp, who is at the center of the story. The emotional core of the film remains similar to the original - a remix of kitsch sentimental drama.
The film "The Trapp Family - A Life of Music" directed by Ben Verbong, starring Matthew Macfayden, Eliza Bennett, Yvonne Catterfeld, Cornelius Obonya, and Rosemary Harris is released on November 12 in Germany. A worldwide release is expected for the Christmas holidays.