By Anne-Marie O'Connor

National Bestseller

The precise tale that encouraged the motion picture Woman in Gold starring Helen Mirren and Ryan Reynolds.

Contributor to the Washington Post Anne-Marie O’Connor brilliantly regales us with the galvanizing tale of Gustav Klimt’s 1907 masterpiece—the breathtaking portrait of a Viennese Jewish socialite, Adele Bloch-Bauer. the distinguished portray, stolen through Nazis in the course of global struggle II, as a consequence turned the topic of a decade-long dispute among her heirs and the Austrian government.

When the U.S. very best courtroom turned focused on the case, its selection had profound ramifications within the paintings global. Expertly researched, masterfully instructed, The girl in Gold is instantly a beautiful depiction of fin-de siècle Vienna, a riveting story of Nazi warfare crimes, and a desirable glimpse into the high-stakes workings of the modern paintings world.

One of the simplest Books of the yr: The Huffington PostThe Christian technology Monitor.  
Winner of the Marfield nationwide Award for humanities Writing. Winner of a California publication Award. 

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He directed a mendacious little Nazi propaganda movie, Refugees, a couple of German village imperiled through menacing dark-skinned Slavs desirous to ravish blonde German girls. A German officer modeled on Adolf Hitler involves the rescue. Nazi movies approximately rapacious Slavs or malignant Jews have been a perilous severe attempt to inspire German infantrymen who will be ordered to kill ethnic “enemies. ” One usual propaganda movie of the time portrayed Germans locked in focus camps and brutalized through murderous Poles. In 1934, Ucicky’s Refugees was once provided the 1st country movie prize, created by way of Goebbels for motion pictures that glorified nationwide Socialism. His subsequent movie, Morgenrot (Dawn), a couple of German submarine commander, was once screened through Hitler 3 days after he took place of work as chancellor. Ucicky had made his selection. One evening in 1935, Ucicky was once sipping wine on the house of a screenwriter while Billy Wilder sauntered in. Eying Ucicky, Wilder re-marked, “For me, the air stinks with a Nazi within the room. ” Wilder walked out, went into exile, and fulfilled his promise as a cinematic genius. Ucicky lower back to Hitler’s Vienna as a key participant on the quirky previous movie studio of count number Sascha—now a good Nazi outfit renamed Vienna movie. Ucicky used to be a darling of the Führer. In 1939, Ucicky mingled with Hitler and Goebbels at festivities for Richard Strauss’s opera Friedenstag, which have been additionally a party of the composer’s seventy-fifth birthday. Strauss was once an uneasy camp follower. His daughter-in-law, Alice, used to be Jewish, and her relatives was once at risk. In 1935, Strauss had refused to take away the identify of librettist Stefan Zweig from the German playbill of 1 of his operas. “Do you believe Mozart used to be consciously ‘Aryan’ whilst he composed? ” Strauss grumbled in a letter to Zweig that used to be intercepted by means of the Gestapo. Ucicky had no pesky qualms. He waved over opera singer Hans warmer to supply him a movie function, and invited him to fulfill Hitler. Ucicky recruited one among Vienna’s maximum actresses, Paula Wessely, who had as soon as introduced Maria Altmann to tears as a sufferer of unrequited love in Schnitzler’s Liebelei. He persuaded Wessely to celebrity in Homecoming, a propaganda movie approximately “a handful of German humans whose forefathers emigrated East,” to Poland. Wessely performed Marie, the schoolteacher jeopardized by way of the brutal Polish police who torch her German university. The Poles herd German males, ladies, and kids into criminal cells. As they organize to shoot them, “German tanks arrive, proving that the Führer continuously acts in time,” the Nazi playbill for the movie acknowledged. Ucicky’s movie presciently foreshadowed strategies the Germans could use in Poland. As Ucicky equipped his luxurious villa, his motion pictures cleared the path for the murderous German offensive at the East. Austrian Nobel laureate Elfriede Jelinek may sometime name Ucicky’s Homecoming “the worst propaganda function of the Nazis. ” Newly wealthy with Nazi wealth, Ucicky started to hunt for his father’s stolen work, with the aid of Vienna’s best Nazi, Baldur von Schirach, the Gauleiter, or Reich governor, of Vienna.

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