Hitler’s Champions

Hitler’s Champions

“There is just one goal for sports: forging the German character.”

Joseph Goebbels convinced Hitler to make sports an instrument of Nazism. As soon as the Nazis came to power, they perverted sporting and Olympic values into a tool for building the “new man.” Faster, Higher, Stronger: Germany needed to prove its racial superiority in all disciplines, whatever it took.

This film portrays the criss-crossing fates of the greatest German athletes during the Third Reich. Gymnasts, mountain climbers, pilots, boxers, soccer players, race-car drivers, tennis players and more… Their success was a matter of national importance to the Nazi regime, and the 1936 Berlin Olympics was the apotheosis of their efforts. But many champions were sacrificed by the regime, which was obsessed with breaking every possible record. Lurching from minor defeats to major disasters, German sports paid a high price to the totalitarian illusion of a regime wielding absolute domination over a people.

Director :
Jean-Christophe Rosé
Broadcaster :
France 3
Production :
Artline Films
Year :
2016
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