22.04. ‐ 27.04.2025
LFFI18_regionaler Langfilmwettbewerb Die Sonneninsel

Die Sonneninsel

Thomas Elsaesser

For the urban population it was the “Gemieskersch”, for the history of architecture it was an icon of the New Frankfurt. The cathedral-esque Großmarkthalle (market hall) was architect Martin Elsaesser’s way of underlining Frankfurt’s aspirations to being a European metropolis in the 1920’s. At the same time, city planner Ernst May tried to help the housing shortage by creating functionalist satellite settlements, such as the one in the Römerstadt. But the global economic crisis and Nationalsocialism put an end to the work of the reformists. May fled to the Soviet Union, Elsaesser to a secluded Island in East Berlin. This is when landscape architect Leberecht Migge realized his idea of closeness to nature and recycling economy – and started an affair with Elsaesser’s wife Lieselotte. 

In Die Sonneninsel (The Sun-Island), Thomas Elsaesser, grandchild to the architect, tells the story of his grandfather’s imposed life of being a social drop-out and of a tragic ménage-à-trois using never seen before private video footage. 

Die Sonneninsel is a co-production of the strandfilm productions GmbH and the Martin-Elsaesser-Foundation, both based in Frankfurt. The film was made in cooperation with ZDF/3Sat and funded by the HessenFilm and Media GmbH

More information Lichter FilmfestLichter Filmfest

Direction Thomas Elsaesser
Year D 2017
Duration 89 min
Language German OV
Production Dieter Reifarth, Daniel Schössler
Camera Ingo Kratisch
Editing Bert Schmidt, Fabio Andrade, Maren Krüger
Sound Michael Busch, Helge Haack
Music Eike Hosenfeld

Presented by:

Regional Feature Film Program