Taught drama in Munich. Was, among other things, assistant to William Dieterle. Worked from '61 together with Rudolf Noelte. Wrote in '61 the novel "Dein Sohn lässt grüssen". Co-signed the "Oberhausen Manifesto" in '62. Made his first feature film in '65. Won the "Bundesfilmpreis" four times. Member of the management committee of the Berliner Arbeitskreis Film - BAF. Filmography: '65: HOLLYWOOD IN DEBLASCHKA PESCARA (short film), GEIST UND EIN WENIG GLÜCK (documentary), E; '66: DER KAHLE SÄNGER; '66/67: ALLE JAHRE WIEDER; '68: QUARTETT IM BETT; '69: WIR-ZWEI; '71: EINS; '73: CHAPEAU CLAQUE: '78: WAS WÄREN WIR OHNE UNS? (four-part television series); '79/80: DAS TRAUMHAUS.
Plot: A couple of boys and girls have moved into an old, somewhat dilapidated villa. They have created a cosy garden in which they breed their own goats, rabbits and piglets. The swimming pool has also been given a different, more useful function so that the small community is "self-supporting". But a very efficient, hard-working building contractor has plans for this particular villa that do not exactly respect the "paradisiacal" existence of the young people. The young people resist this architectural imperialism and are helped by an older man. This man turns out to be the father of the entrepreneur, but the parties involved were not aware of this.
The youngsters themselves go from bad to worse: the dogged rescue attempts mean that little remains of the paradisiacal villa and garden. They decide to settle down in the countryside, but there too they are pursued by modernisation and progress... Ulrich Schamoni, who a few years ago co-founded the New German Film, is also one of its few humorous exponents. His humour, however, does not immediately lead to exuberant buttock chatter, but rather to an ironic smile. This is also the case in DAS TRAUMHAUS in which he, together with scriptwriter Wolfgang Menge, tackles a number of themes that have become very topical in recent years, including in West Germany. In short, these themes can be grouped under "the search for a different way of life", for a life that is characterised by more humanity and a connection with nature. Thus, DAS TRAUMHAUS becomes a kind of parable about progress, generational conflict, alternative forms of life, etc..
Whether or not one accepts a society dominated by technology is mainly put in terms of a generation conflict. The desires and fears of our time, however banal and naive they may be, are taken seriously by director Schamoni and scriptwriter Menge and incorporated into a moving, emotional plot. The protagonists of this intrigue are sharply contrasted, as was customary in the unworldly tradition of the political slogan film. But the story itself makes it clear how such a thing is not sustainable; despite the well-intentioned help of the older man, it eventually becomes apparent how the fathers' faith in progress is no longer reconcilable with that of their children. And when the youngsters finally move to the countryside, it turns out that there, too, the mistrusted technology is in full swing. In short, one need not expect miracle cures from DAS TRAUMHAUS, but neither does it make one despondent or desperate.
Horst Frank, Judy Winter, Jochen Schroeder
Willi Benninger, Ulrich Schamoni, Regina Ziegler