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Das Birnenmädchen (The Pear Girl)

East Germany, 1988, 22 minutes, color
Director: Horst J. Tappert
Screenplay: Horst J. Tappert
Director of Photography: Lutz Kleber
Music: Günter Joseck
Animation: Elke Bräuniger
Based on an Italian fairy tale, claymation
VHS-PAL, no subtitles
- renting information

Synopsis:

There was once a pear farmer, who had three daughters. Each year he had to bring the king three baskets of pears, but one year he didn’t have enough. Instead, he had the youngest of his daughters climb into the basket, and then he placed pears on top of her head to fill it. When she is discovered by the prince, he falls instantly in love. However, the king makes the Pear Maiden complete a task before he will consent to their marriage: she must find the box of treasures. With the advice of the prince, and with the assistance of friends she had made along the way, the Pear Maiden succeeds.

Sweet puppets act out the story of Das Birnenmädchen, and do so with little speaking. The story is pantomimed so well that comprehension is not a problem, even for beginning language students. Also on this volume: Es waren einmal drei Schwestern.

DEFA-Puppentrickfilm: Märchen aus aller Welt
Volume I: Das Birnenmädchen, Es waren einmal drei Schwestern
Volume II: Die Schöne und das Tier, Die schwarze Burg
Volume III: Urwaldmärchen, Vom faulen Töpfer und dem fleißigen Wäscher


Es waren einmal drei Schwestern (Once Upon a Time There Were Three Sisters)

East Germany, 1982, 17 minutes, color
Director: Katja Georgi
Screenplay: Katja Georgi
Music: Horst Elsner
Director of Photography: Peter Pohler
Animation: Eberhard Klotzsche
Based on a collection of fairy tales, claymation
VHS-PAL, no subtitles
- renting information

Synopsis:

The red-haired and dark-haired sisters complain about everything: the wind, the moon, and the sun. Their blond-haired sister is much more patient and friendly. On a hot day, they go one after another to the well to drink some cold water. The young man Silberwasser has been bewitched and speaks to them from the well. He asks each one to promise to be his bride, before they may drink. The red-haired and dark-haired sisters are thirsty and promise without intending to keep their word. The blond-haired sister promises to be his bride, and the promise frees the young man from his curse. Yet he must hide himself and wait for his bride to prove her devotion. The blond-haired sister must find him, and she turns to the sun, the moon, and the wind for help.

This story has elements of well-known fairy tales: spells and promises, good and evil, three friends, rewards for good deeds, a journey, and a happy ending. Also on this volume is the story of another strong woman: Das Birnenmädchen.

DEFA-Puppentrickfilm: Märchen aus aller Welt
Volume I: Das Birnenmädchen, Es waren einmal drei Schwestern
Volume II: Die Schöne und das Tier, Die schwarze Burg
Volume III: Urwaldmärchen, Vom faulen Töpfer und dem fleißigen Wäscher

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Jessica Hale