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‘DOK Leipzig’ is a yearly film German festival which gives prizes to the best new European movie makers.
A German winner of this year, which is called ‘Lord of the Toys’ follows two German youtube stars who specialize in ‘unboxing’ and playing with toys. They make their money from their youtube subscribers. The documentary maker followed the two, who live in Dresden, for years.
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The problem for the rest of German cinemagoers is that, just like most of the youngsters in Dresden (which was the birth city of Pegida, the anti-immigrant movement), the two protagonists are, to put it mildly, slurring various far-right quotes during the film.
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Lord of the Toys won this year's ‘Golden Dove’ at the prestigious DOK long documentary competition in Leipzig and is hotly debated. This weekend it even made the national German evening news, called the Tagesschau.
The film is focused on influencer Max Herzberg (called Adlersson on Youtube) who boasts more than 280,000 subscribers to his main channel.
With a trailer already showing sentences like “We are Nazis and We are proud you Fucking Cunt!” the movie furthermore focuses on the youngsters in Germany which are not the typical Merkel voters. At a certain point, the group can be seen aggressing immigrants during the Oktoberfest in Munich.
During the presentation of the film, German reporters asked Director Pablo Ben Yakov: You were present when the group verbally and physically attacked foreigners at the Oktoberfest. What went through your mind at that point?
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="de" dir="ltr">"Maximale Ignoranz"<br>Der Dokumentarfilm „Lord of the Toys“ porträtiert eine Gruppe rechter YouTuber aus Dresden. Das DOK Leipzig zeigt sich in seinem Umgang damit erschreckend unpolitisch.<br><br>➡️ <a href="https://t.co/9VPqmacw20">https://t.co/9VPqmacw20</a><a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/printerwahn?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#printerwahn</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Leipzig?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Leipzig</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/student?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#student</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/dokleipzig?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#dokleipzig</a></p>— student! Leipzig (@studentleipzig) <a href="https://twitter.com/studentleipzig/status/1060171075567472640?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 7, 2018</a></blockquote>
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“It was clear from the start that there might be violence if we headed to Oktoberfest with the men. And we realized that it is almost impossible to film something like that because physical violence means we can't do our jobs properly. That's when intuition and reflexes kicked in. At the first blow, we stopped the camera and checked to see what was going on, whether anyone needed help. It was a real fight and it wasn't nice.”
“Of course we made a film that we thought would trigger debate. But I was a bit surprised about which corner the debate came from. We were worried right wing extremists might threaten us but have meanwhile realized that the same kind of troll culture that we portray and criticize in the film has brought us a lot of attention”
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