Der verbotene Film [2006]
Forbidden Film [2006]
16mm, unknown length

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I found this film can while I was taking photographs for locations for my new film 'dromosphere'. it was lying in the woods covered by some leaves and dirt. underneath the film can was a small leaflet with the title 'der verbotene film' on the cover. inside lots of diagrams, tables and equations caught my eye while I was quickly browsing through it. upon further reading it was mentioned that opening the can would bring destruction and disease upon mankind. the author was going on at great length about the mayhem that was coming to the human race should this can ever be opened. I only skipped through it quickly as it was very cold and I already spent several hours taking pictures.

back home I put the leaflet on my heater to dry as it was a bit wet and the film can in my shelf. I left my apartment to meet a few friends in a bar and told them about what just happened but they were only mocking me. they didn't understand the responsibility that came with this find. the words about the danger this dreadful can poses should it be opened reverberated in my mind on my way back home.

as I came near my apartment I smelled smoke. I ran up the stairs and quickly opened the door. fortunately there was no fire, only lots of smoke. unfortunately the leaflet I left on the heater was no more. strange, how could it have caught fire?

now with no information about this verboten film I can only speculate about the danger. after thinking about it for several weeks here are my conclusions:

000001. this film can holds no film but an explosive device that goes off when opened. however, I remember the author of the leaflet was warning not of an explosion but of something terrible that will be released upon the whole of mankind. not just some individuals that get blown to pieces. and also, why would someone put an explosive device in a film can in the first place?

000002. this film can holds no film but a virus or bacteria that will give death and disease to those close to the can. after infecting them it will spread to others endangering the human species. possible. but still, why in a film can? maybe the scientist working on it had to hide it very quickly and it was just there, came in handy when he had to smuggle it out of the research facilities for whatever reasons.

000003. this film can is cursed. we know these things have happened before. one has only to think of those legendary egyptian curses. usually a curse only affects a small circle of people near to the cursed item but maybe this can was cursed by means and knowledge that weren't available before so it will affect the whole of mankind. it could be that the author of the leaflet cursed the film can himself or he witnessed the item being cursed by someone else.

000004. this film can indeed holds a film. a film so deadly, so deviant it had to be hidden from this world. it could be the ultimate misanthropist propaganda movie that infects the minds of those who watch it to a degree that it instills an instant desire to kill. kill the next fellow human nearby and copy the film to the thousands to make more people watch it and execute the filmmaker's vicious vision of doom.

I will probably never find out the truth about this film but I will take it upon myself to guard my find and shield it from evil forces whatever the costs. nobody will be given the chance to open this film can and bring death and destruction upon mankind as long as I live.
[march 16th 2006]


to make sure nobody opens the can I today torch-brazed it shut. it is now safe unless extreme force is applied. at least nobody can open it now by accident.

[april 10th 2006]


I received some threatening letters because of the film. at first I didn't take them seriously but now with more and more coming in each day I have to admit that I am a bit worried. what if it would fall into the hands of a dangerous psychopath? it must be avoided at all costs!

[july 10th 2006]


the daring guys from the TIE festival in denver will exhibit 'der verbotene film'. it will be on display at starz filmcenter during the festival in october. they've assured me that it will be savely guarded during the exhibition. I have to admit it's not easy to give the film away for even a short time. it worries me that so many people will be so very close to it. on the other hand it lifts a bit of the pressure of guarding it myself all the time.
[september 24th 2006]


the film arrived save and sound at TIE. it's currently on display at starz filmcenter. I'm relieved it didn't get lost in the mail. I guess I'm just worrying too much. my friend noah manos who helped making it all happen made a nice photo of the installation. take a look:

[october 13th 2006]


the verboten film was stolen from the premises of the starz filmcenter last night. that's bad, really bad. just when I was feeling a bit more relaxed about the whole thing the worst case scenario has got to happen. the denver police departement is investigating the theft. I was on the phone with one of the officers and tried to explain to him the dangerous nature of the film but I have the feeling he didn't really understand. I just hope they'll find it until it's too late.
[october 15th 2006]


it is with great joy that I can announce the recovery of 'der verbotene film'. however I now have to deal with police authorities in denver who presently are not willing to send it back to me. apparently it is being held by members of special tactics.

details of the recovery from the police report:
"the film was found just before 2am this morning along northbound I-25 , between the 58th Ave and I-70 exits. the film container was badly damaged, but it remains intact. evidence suggests, the thief attempted to break into it by force. authorities suspect the thief was hit by an oncoming car while attempting to cross the highway. blood samples taken from the scene support this theory."

I'm glad nothing worse happened. after all who knows what hell would have broken loose if the thief had succeeded in opening the can. now it will be hard to convince them to give it back to me. it is not save in their hands.
[october 17th 2006]