Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Sieve of Time: Memoirs of Leni Riefenstahl” as Want to Read:
The Sieve of Time: Memoirs of Leni Riefenstahl
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

The Sieve of Time: Memoirs of Leni Riefenstahl

3.87 of 5 stars 3.87  ·  rating details  ·  150 ratings  ·  23 reviews
An autobiography of controversial German dancer, actress and eventually Hitler's top national film executive, Leni Riefenstahl.
Paperback, 688 pages
Published October 1st 1999 by Quartet Books (first published 1982)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Sieve of Time, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Sieve of Time

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 351)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Candace
this woman was amazing.
Erik Graff
Nov 26, 2012 Erik Graff rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: cinema fans
Recommended to Erik by: no one
Shelves: biography
Back during high school a few of us drove to Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois to see Riefenstahl's Triumph of the Will, a film I have not seen since but remember with extraordinary clarity, so impressive was it, visually speaking. Other than clips from her later Olympia, I have not seen her other cinematic productions.

Consequently, I picked this up without knowing much about the author beyond the fact that she was the most famous film director associated with the Third Reich. I had
...more
Braden
The self-serving reminiscences of a Nazi propagandist and collaborator who refused to admit it. Riefenstahl is an incredibly rare blend of a person lacking self-awareness with quite a healthy sense of self-worth and fascist tendencies. Her memoirs are a fascinating example of equivocation and moral justification, but are often unbearable in its rampant self-aggrandization and total lack of remorse. Worth a read, though, if you're interested in Third Reich hangers-on, the German film industry, an ...more
Jessica T.
I have defeated you Leni Riefenstahl. A part of me believes this woman is a liar and a sociopath...
Roman Moguchiy
Не люблю мемуары как жанр, но простые, честные, литературные истории — это всегда интересно.
Michelle
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mark
Ms. Riefenstahl is more or less the prisoner of history. Having been one of the world's greatest innovative cinematographers, and forced to create what was effectively "the most effective propaganda fill of all time" the Triumph of the Will, Ms Reifenstahl keeps her own reputation intact by being the person who also documented the 1936 Olympics, her film of which, Olympia, was given awards in all the countries Hitler later conquered. She insists on her apolitical freedom, and takes refuge from t ...more
Stephanie
Leni Riefenstahl is a perfect gateway into the German mindset during WWII. Throughout the book she is constantly aware of keeping up her mask of ignorance while promoting her artistic talent. It would be impossible to say she did not make an impact on the way films are made. One can tell she is aware that the reader has already convicted her as a Nazi collaborator in his or her mind, and she dances around her life story in an effort to prove her innocence. This is unlikely to give you a 100% tru ...more
Andrew
A substantive and informative book which has as its central problem the issue of Riefenstahl's complicity in the Nazi regime. If one is looking for some kind of insight and anecdotal observations on the Weimar film industry, major actors and directors of the period (such as Emil Jannings, F.W. Pabst, Marlene Dietrich) then this is a very useful read. However when Leni tries to provide any form of self-analysis or reflection there are problems with her ego and her need to excuse herself for being ...more
Nancy Thormann
The last 80 pages were good. I still can't believe how badly she was treated by the German people. She seems to have been well accepted by the Americans and British. They seemed to appreciate her work as a director more than the Germans did. The Germans seemed to have gone from the extreme of accepting everything Hitler and the Nazis did to accepting nothing about the Nazis and Hitler. The world was black and white to them, especially in the years after the War. There was no middle ground anywhe ...more
Vasile
As the blurb says, "as one of the most controversial and debated character of the twenty first century" However, as a student studying the rise to prominence of Leni Riefenstahl and looking at it in a historical and source based analyse, it's a hard and difficult praise. But in hindsight, I loved reading the life of Leni and her story about her "five" lives. She was 85 when she published this book...can you believe all that she said, word-by-word? Quotes-by-Quotes from people she encountered?
Tawney
Nov 17, 2009 Tawney added it
Oh Leni. Through your memoir I can see why you say everyone loved you, especially Goebbels and Hitler. It's an interesting explanatory theory for making six (not four as you claim) films with fascist aesthetics. Those passages about filming on mountains and on the perilous icebergs of Greenland are beautiful and terrifying. OK, I confess I stopped at page 300 or so, but I'll be back. This is great work of fiction.
Martyn
As my good friend and film professor Laura said - "I think, though, that because she was affiliated with the Nazis, people who defend her have to inflate her contribution to cinema in order to justify their interest in her. If she had been a Swiss documentarist, she'd get a few lines in a film history book, some intro class screenings, and that would be that."

Word.
Erin Mallon
This was the first non-text-book I read relating to World-War II. It spurred a major obsession, and was otherwise just generally really interesting. It is long and very detailed, so if you don't like this kind of thing, it might be too dry. Still, I think the subject is impossibly engrossing for anyone who likes history, especially women in history.
Pilar Lacasa
Intersting. I think about silent movies, women and Germany during the Nazi's time. Another perspective. under Nazism. Another view, this time explored by the author, who needs to justify her contacts with Hitler. I think this is not a good translation to Spanish
Zuzana Kaprinay
Trying to find the answer, how she was coping with the responsibility for supporting the hitler's regime. I did not believe, that she "did not know" how she was stating, but after the book i know it for sure, that she just did not care at all:-(
Lea
Actually my rate 4 ½ for the book.
I understand that her memoirs are more personal than an open minded point of view. Any way, she was an outstanding woman... Foremost because she had not lost her dignity passing through the life...
Ben Morrison
This was pretty good. Really long, but a surprisingly easy read. Who to believe? Was she a nazi or a dope? Someone else please read this book, so I can talk about it with you. It's worth it.
Leo Jacobowitz
oh no!!!!!!!! Its Leni Riefenstahl!!!!!! Arrghhhgggghhhh!!!! She's a nazi.....a N A Z I - O T S Y!
This is one great biography - and she is one brilliant artist. AArrrghghghghghgh!!!!
Kateywatey
Dipping in and out to 1). prepare myself for Steven Bach's new bio. and 2). allow her voice haunt me like it did on the first read.

Gripping, fascinating, what a life....
Renata
Great biography. Believe it or not, I decided to read it because it's one of Tina Fey's favorite books. :˜
Margaret
I found it hard to get a handle on this book, Leni presents herself as a woman with a very direct personality and who is strong and almost obsessively driven to succeed in a world were women where still treated as lesser citizens. Any goal she set for herself she achieved, all men desired her, all women were jealous of her (which she portrays as an annoying hindrance to her work). Then she decides to meet Hitler and gets ensnared by the Reich, who apparently never directly financed her most famo ...more
Irina
Irina marked it as to-read
Jan 27, 2015
Jon
Jon marked it as to-read
Jan 27, 2015
Laura Lupei
Laura Lupei is currently reading it
Jan 21, 2015
Abigail
Abigail marked it as to-read
Jan 13, 2015
Mr. Gutiérrez
Mr. Gutiérrez marked it as to-read
Jan 11, 2015
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Emperor and the Wolf: The Lives and Films of Akira Kurosawa and Toshiro Mifune
  • Cassavetes on Cassavetes
  • Can You Ever Forgive Me?: Memoirs of a Literary Forger
  • The Meaning of Hitler
  • Something Like an Autobiography
  • If They Move . . . Kill 'Em!: The Life and Times of Sam Peckinpah
  • Movie Wars: How Hollywood and the Media Limit What Movies We Can See
  • Memoirs of Gluckel of Hameln
  • The Stanley Kubrick Archives
  • The Hitler Myth: Image and Reality in the Third Reich
  • The Venetian Years
  • Leni: The Life and Work of Leni Riefenstahl
  • The Films of Akira Kurosawa
  • The Last Days of Hitler
  • The War Against the Jews: 1933-1945
  • Albert Speer: His Battle with Truth
  • My Secret Life: An Erotic Diary of Victorian London
  • More than Night: Film Noir in its Contexts
183684
Helene Bertha Amalie "Leni" Riefenstahl (German pronunciation: [ˈʁiːfənʃtaːl]; 22 August 1902 – 8 September 2003) was a German film director, actress and dancer widely noted for her aesthetics and innovations as a filmmaker. Her most famous film was Triumph des Willens (Triumph of the Will), a propaganda film made at the 1934 Nuremberg congress of the Nazi Party. Riefenstahl's prominence in the Th ...more
More about Leni Riefenstahl...
Africa The Last of the Nuba Olympia People of Kau Coral Gardens

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »