Online German Films before 1933

The Early Silent Era - Germany 1895-1915

This treasure trove of more than 100 pre-Weimar feature films and shorts is part of Klaus Kreimeier’s website, which shows films from global cinema prior to World War I. Based on his book Traum und Exzess: Die Kulturgeschichte des frühen Kinos (Vienna 2011), this online archive was established in 2012 and has grown to include over 1,500 accessible films. It contributes to preserving the world’s film heritage before 1915 – a heritage of experiments with film language on which later cinema, including Weimar cinema, was built.

European Film Gateway

In 2014, in commemoration of the beginning of World War I and funded by the EU, 40 film archives across Europe digitized their holdings of films and newsreel relating to the war. The EFG 1914 project gives access to around 3000 historic films, including a virtual exhibition.

Films From The Weimar Republic

This collection of documentary and newsreel films from 1919-1933 is part of a 2019 multi-media commemoration of the beginnings of the Weimar Republic – ‘Die erste deutsche Demokratie” in 1919. Digitized for the occasion by Bundesarchiv/Film Archiv, the selection gives access to 67 rare newsreels about political and cultural events.

Moving Image Archive

This site is part of the gigantic Internet Archive, an online library of millions of free books, movies, music, and more, all searchable by media type, subject , language, and year. The site includes non-fiction, ephemeral films from Germany and Austria.


A constantly growing repository of German films before 1933, this user- generated, unregulated ‘’archive” encompasses several hundreds of feature films, trailers, avant-garde and documentary films (including interviews with filmmakers, etc.) from the Weimar period, ranging in print quality from barely watchable to excellent. Some films are subtitled or offer different versions and modern soundtracks; most also include extensive comments. Interesting to study how users not only watch old films but often appropriate them in new creative ways.

The Criterion Channel

Pioneering high-quality DVD and blu-ray productions of classic films (high- resolution, new sound, commentary track and bonus materials) since the 1980s, Criterion started its subscription-based streaming service in 2016. Classic editions of late Weimar films, such as the early sound films (M, Dreigroschenoper, Westfront 1918, Das Testament of Dr. Mabuse) and late silent features (Pandora’s Box and People on Sunday) can now be streamed on demand.


A free streaming service of canonical silent and sound films in partnership with (most) public libraries and universities.