Film as a medium of political advertising

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Brochure about the political potential of film.


In 1916, German officials were still hesitant about investing in the development of film propaganda. The Messter Company, which by 1914 had already pioneered the production of widely disseminated war newsreels, addressed decision-makers by putting together arguments in favour of film propaganda in a brochure. It began by listing anti-German films produced by the Allies and screened worldwide. This was followed by an estimate of cinemagoers worldwide who would have been exposed to the Messter newsreels. It is evident that Messter's efforts were crucial in Germany's decision to developing further film propaganda and in the establishment of the Bufa (Bild-und Filmamt [Film and Picture Office]) in 1917. Bufa infiltrated successfully national cinemas and established its own cinemas under well-known, local names.