Dragon Slayers
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Dragon Slayers

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Documentary film (65 min)
by Petrus van der Let, 2009

Portraits of dragon slayers are cross-cultural phenomena that appear in a wide range of religious contexts, from the ancient Indian Rigveda to the sacred book of the Maya. The ancient Roman Mithraic cult is the most important predecessor religion of Christianity and, according to the latest research, 2000 years older: Child-god Mithras slays a dragon, sacrifices himself in the shape of a bull and ascends to heaven with his father Sol (sun). In psychological terms, the story represents the infant’s transition from the nursing mother to the language-dominated world of the father. The self-sacrifice of Jesus is also followed by his ascension to his father’s side. The Mater Dolorosa and forlorn women are left behind.

After “Gods with Pointed Caps”, “Punch and Prophecy”, and “Journey to the Cradle of Europe”, “Dragon Slayers” is the fourth part of a mini series on the origin of myths and religions in infant perception. Film locations: Austria, Germany, Slovenia, Italy, Greece, Turkey, Guatemala.

  • Length: 65 min., 45 min. versions
  • Format: HDV, Beta Digital, 16:9, Pal, stereo; version with English subtitles;
  • Director: Petrus van der Let
  • Camera: Benjamin Epp, Hartmut Schulz, Walter Wehmeyer
  • Editing: Benjamin Epp
  • Music: Georg Albert, Christina Baader, Erik Satie, Peter Uwira
  • Production: A co-production of Petrus van der Let Film and Filmproduktion Benjamin Epp, Magda Wimmer, Artia Nova Film, Uj Budapest Filmstudio, DUNA-TV, H, PLANET-TV, BRalpha, D, SKANDINAVIA-TV, DK, Film Promotion Fund of the Provinces of Lower Austria and Styria.
  • Festivals: MEDIMED Sitges Spain 09: Nominated for the Ahmed Attia's Award for the Dialogue of Cultures; Festival Internazionale del Film Archeologico di Rovereto, Italy (October 2009); 11th International Archeological Filmfestival Belgrade (March 2010); 8th AGON Archaeological Film Festival (Athens, May 11-16th 2010).
  • ARCHEOLOGIAVIVA.TV (italian version):   www.sperimentarea.tv   archeologiaviva.tv
  • Trailer: www.youtube.com/user/AlibriVerlag
  • Interviews and off-narration: Where the Gods come from (PDF)

Books to the film:

  • Harald Strohm Mithra
    Oder: Warum "Gott Vertrag" beim Aufgang der Sonne in Wehmut zurückblickte,
    Munich 2008;
  • Über den Ursprung der Religion – Oder: Warum Indra mit dem Dreirad zur Hochzeit fuhr, Munich 2003;
  • Petrus van der Let Zipfelmützengötter – Religion als Echo der Kindheit, Aschaffenburg 2004