Unsichtbare Tage oder Die Legende von den weißen Krokodilen

Invisible Days, or the Legend of the White Crocodiles
In her essay film, Eva Hiller illustrates the nightly infrastructure of a large city, using Frankfurt am Main and Berlin as examples. Just as pet reptiles gone feral are reported to populate New York’s sewers, so too is there bustling activity – often invisible to outsiders – when darkness falls on Germany’s metropolises. Invisible Days illustrates the ways in which that activity is linked to technocratic hierarchies on the one hand, and physical labour on the other, in an analogy with the behemoth machinery in Fritz Lang’s Metropolis. Images of traffic control systems with their blinking circuits and automated sorting facilities are juxtaposed with observations of night-shift workers at Frankfurt airport or in an emergency room. Shots from sewage treatment plants and cable ducts, video stores and laundromats show the vast extent to which the empire of light keeps the central supply arteries functioning, thereby sustaining the municipal order even by night… Enhanced by critical commentary and narrative interpolations, Eva Hiller’s brilliant montages illuminate the dark side of modernity: “It must be night for it to become day.”
by Eva Hiller
with Renan Demirkan, Meghan Gay
Germany 1991 German 77’ Colour Documentary form | World premiere of the digitally restored version | DCP: Deutsche Kinemathek


  • Renan Demirkan (deutsche Fassung)
  • Meghan Gay (English version)


Director Eva Hiller
Screenplay Eva Hiller
Cinematography Thomas Mauch
Editing Stefan Beckers
Music Matthias Raue
Sound Michael Busch
Artistic Adviser Wolfgang Kabisch
Producer Eva Hiller

Additional information

DCP: Deutsche Kinemathek