Stephan Köster: Der Erfolgsbericht

Der Erfolgsbericht, Stephan Köster, 61‘, FRG,  ZDF 26.5.1983, Original German version

An unbelievable occurrence on the edge of world history: Documentary film director Stephan Köster, a member of a Vietnam aid group in Cologne, flies to Saigon in 1975 on behalf of North Vietnamese television to film the withdrawal of the Americans. There he spends days hiding in a hotel and meets Xuan, a television presenter who has fled from the Viet Cong. The two fall in love. Years later, long after his film footage has been shown at political solidarity events in Germany, the filmmaker uses the remaining footage to compile his personal “success story”. “Do I understand the approval of treatment correctly,” the then ZDF director writes to the editorial department, “that Mr Köster has realised that he was a victim of North Vietnamese propaganda at the time and now wishes to rectify that?”

Stephan Köster is a German filmmaker and cinematographer. His film Der Erfolgsbericht (1983) was screened at the Berlinale and made in collaboration with the editorial department Das kleine Fernsehspiel, as was the documentary Das Kreuz des Südens (1986) and the feature film Der Schatztaucher (1995).