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The ErlKing ONF/NFB


Catalogue Number:  NFB526242
Producer:  National Film Board Of Canada
Producers:  Ben Zelkowicz
Directors:  Ben Zelkowicz
Producing Agencies:  Zelkowicz, Ben
Subject:  Animation, Literature
Country Of Origin:  Canada
Copyright Year:  2002
Running Time:  5:02


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Who rides there so late through the night dark and drear?
he father it is, with his infant so dear;
He holdeth the boy tightly clasp'd in his arm,
He holdeth him safely, he keepeth him warm.
(Translation by Edgar A. Bowring)

So begins Goethe's poem "The ErlKing," Artist Ben Zelkowicz combines sand-on-glass animation, Schubert's music and Goethe's poem. He captures the haunting, nightmarish quality of the tale about the ErlKing, who steals and kills a little boy.

The moving images, resembling woodcuts, show the menacing ErlKing, the child and his father. The drama builds, ending in sorrow as the father holds his dead child.


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