Syberberg’s Parsifal makes us thoroughly aware that, in a film, the synchronisation of image and sound always already implies the original lack of synchronicity. Considering this film, Deleuze wrote about the irrational relation between the visual and the aural in which the audiovisual image is not a whole but a “fusion of the tear”. It is no coincidence that Syberberg based his film on Wagner. The article tries to show that the film is by no means a self-willed postmodernist (over)interpretation of Wagner’s masterpiece, but rather precisely in its eccentricity tries to follow, as radically as possible, the consequences of something that Wagner himself delineated in his conceptual principles of delimiting and connecting the aural and the visual world. The means of technical reproduction enabled the experience of the incommensurability of the two worlds that Wagner talks about to be brought to light in a new way. Furthermore, in connecting this incommensurability, they also brought a surprising turn in relation to the external and the internal world.
The integral version of this article can be found in the printed KINO!