Die Reise nach Lyon

Blind Spot
Elisabeth is married to a German and has a young daughter. She leaves her husband and child behind to trace the path of women’s rights activist Flora Tristan (1803–1844). The young, French historian takes the train to Lyon, where the early socialist spent the year before her death trying to create a Workers’ Union; ten thousand of them would later join her funeral procession. Elisabeth roams the streets and byways, using a Dictaphone to record the sounds of the city. Her goal is to reconstruct a sense memory of Tristan’s life, and in doing so, she finds the city to be an historical echo chamber: “Maybe I should have become a private detective”. During her research, stroller Elisabeth delves into different time periods. Her search for traces of history is an attempt to construct recorded history as a series of subjective recollections. And at this point in time, Blind Spot has itself become an historical documentation – in dolly shots and stills, the film “inhales” Lyon’s working class neighbourhood of La Croix-Rousse, which has today become the hipster district.
by Claudia von Alemann
with Rebecca Pauly, Denise Péron, Jean Badin, Sarah Stern, Maurice Garden, Pierre-Emile Legrand
Federal Republic of Germany 1980 German, French 112’ Colour Rating R6


  • Rebecca Pauly
  • Denise Péron
  • Jean Badin
  • Sarah Stern
  • Maurice Garden
  • Pierre-Emile Legrand


Written and Directed by Claudia von Alemann
Cinematography Hille Sagel
Stills Photography Abisag Tüllmann
Editing Monique Dartonne
Music Frank Wolff
Sound Auguste Galli, Alain Champelouvier, Daniel Deshays
Producer Claudia von Alemann

Additional information

DCP: Deutsche Kinemathek, Berlin

Claudia von Alemann

Born in Seebach, Germany, she studied art history and sociology at the Freie Universität Berlin and film at the Ulm School of Design. From 1968 to 1969 she lived in Paris and directed the documentary Das ist nur der Anfang – der Kampf geht weiter about the Etats Généraux du Cinéma. In 1973 she organised, with Helke Sander, the First International Women’s Cinema Conference in the Kino Arsenal, Berlin. From 1974 to 1980 she lived again in Paris. In 1982 she won the German Film Critics Association Award for Die Reise nach Lyon. From 1982 to 2006 she was professor for Film at FH Dortmund and guest professor at film schools including in Havana, Cambridge, New York, Boston and Montréal. Her feature-length video Das Frauenzimmer is held in numerous video art collections and museums including MoMa in New York. She lives in Cologne and Havana.


1966 Einfach; short film 1967 Exprmntl 4 Knokke; documentary · Fundevogel · Lustgewinn I 1968 Das ist nur der Anfang – der Kampf geht weiter; documentary 1969 Kurzfilmtage Oberhausen; documentary 1970 Kathleen und Eldridge Cleaver; documentary · Das schwache Geschlecht muss stärker werden; documentary 1971 Aus eigener Kraft – Frauen in Vietnam; documentary 1972 Namibia; documentary · Es kommt drauf an, sie zu verändern; documentary 1977 Filme der Sonne und der Nacht: Ariane Mnouchkine; documentary 1978 Die Reise nach Lyon 1981 Das Frauenzimmer · Nebelland 1983 Der Beginn aller Schrecken ist Liebe 1984 Die Tür in der Mauer 1986 Das nächste Jahrhundert wird uns gehören 1989 Nachdenken über Film; short film 1990 Lichte Nächte; documentary 1991 November; short film · ...wie nächtliche Schatten; documentary 1992 Denny, Ameise und die anderen; short film 2015 Die Frau mit der Kamera - Porträt der Fotografin Abisag Tüllmann; documentary

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2019