Fußball, Motorballclub (LFS01413 2)

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Soccer and Motoball in Philippsburg 1957.


Reference / film number :  LFS01413 2
Date :  1957
Coloration :  Color
Sound :  Mute
Running time :  00:04:10
Reel format :  8 mm
Genre :  Amateur movie
Thematics :  Sport, Soccer
Archive :  Haus des Dokumentarfilms

Context and analysis

Motoball is considered the fastest team sport in the world and is quasi 'football on motorcycles'. A proper Motoball team consists of ten players, two mechanics and one team leader. The players sit on 250 cc motorcycles and the goal is to bring the 40 centimeter ball into the opponent's goal. The game is played on a pitch the size of a football field. At the beginning of a game, four field players and one goalkeeper are used per team, which can be exchanged in a flying change.

With the economic miracle of the 1950s, the enthusiasm for motorsport went hand in hand - at the Nürburgring, the newly founded Formula One attracted the masses. In Philippsburg in 1954 the Motorsport Club MSC Philippsburg e.V. was founded. In early 1956, the first motorcycles were purchased, rebuilt for the Motoball game operation and denied the first dressing game. In 1958, the young club even won the German championship; this should succeed him again in 1989. They play until today.

The colored private film about a Motoballgame from the start-up phase 1957 first moves the players with the blue-and-white striped jerseys in the view, swings them in turn in the half-close. Then the players are in a shot behind them as they walk across the square, behind them the young fans - two boys look directly into the camera. The amateur film does not focus on the Motoballspiel, but persistently sums up the audience. In the foreground, sports pushes itself as a social event. Filmmaking itself becomes an event for those who are filmed: even if only for a few seconds, they become performers, fellow performers who make their personal appearance.

A kind of reversal takes place: Although the film begins with the introduction of the Philippsburg team, but it does not remain with a subsequent brief look at the audience ranks. The space in which the event takes place is only hinted at in its excerpts - the long shot on the scene, as it was known at that time from cinema and television, seems to be postponed again and again. Attitude follows attitudes that show audiences in semi-close or near. Men in a hat, standing together in two or three and looking into the camera. Two half-totals open the room situation in depth to the spectators - and then again small groups of spectators, which include two policemen. With two short cuts are now sporting activities to see: In the foreground, a passing motorbike right again free the view of the spectators in the background. Then a motorcycle comes from the depths to the camera by avoiding another. It is not the Motoballspiel, but a kind of course on which everyone can show his skill with the motorcycle.

Finally, the real event: White referee, team captains shaking hands, players from both teams, sitting on motorbikes. A small motorcycle billiard opens up the impressions of the game - half total, which in the following mainly a scene vary: The opposing team pushes the ball on the gate of the Philippsburg. Even the game itself is not about getting a picture of the process. The scene showing the attack of the opponent repeats itself, almost rhythmic - until the ball runs out of space in front of the Philippsburg goal. Here, the film tilts into the subjective, showing its own view: The Motoballspiel joins a sequence of images, with which it turns out to be its other side as a social event.

In the last part of the movie, some Motoball players suddenly come to the camera. Getting ready for competition breaks the chronology that used to exist. When a football match is seamlessly visible, the successive one is completely on the track - the film jumps into a different, free way of dealing with time. He gathers small scenes, whether they run in the background of the Motoballspiels or on the football field. In both cases, viewers not only remain anonymous, but stand out with their faces: men, of course, above all, but always women too.

The medium of the private film holds the different together by making actors and viewers visible - as contributors to the social event that they both produce together. The amateur filmmaker becomes the participant - a participant observer who sees and films something that is not seen in the sports coverage. With his other view, he brings the event to what it appears in the film.

Reiner Bader

Places and monuments


  1. This film analysis is still in progress. It may therefore be incomplete and contain errors.