Heart of Spain

The first production from Frontier Films, the film production collective that was the successor to NYKino and the Workers Film and Photo League, Heart of Spain focuses on the Spanish Civil War, a conflict that became a touchstone of its era and was the most forceful opposition to the rising threat of fascism in Europe. Heart of Spain was begun by Geza Karpathi and Herbert Kline, who ultimately turned their footage over to Paul Strand, Leo Hurwitz, and Ben Maddow to make the film. It is compelling both for its shrewd formal aesthetics and as a sympathetic human document of the war. 

Though made quickly in the heat of support for the International Brigades in Spain, it is the first longer film to use the innovative editing structure and formal language that Frontier Films would bring to maturity in its later films. This film form would influence the development of the documentary for decades to come.

This is a transfer from a 1-inch tape made in the 1980’s

Leo Hurwitz and Paul Strand




30 minutes



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Frontier Films



Heart of Spain


Documented in Spain

Herbert Kline

Geza Karpathi


Material scenarized and edited by 

Paul Strand

Leo Hurwitz


Commentary by

David Wolff

Herbert Kline


Narrated by

John O’Shaughnessy


Music arranged by 

Alex North


Photography by

Geza Karpathi


Produced with the co-operation of the Canadian Committee to Aid Spain and The American Medical Bureau to Aid Spanish Democracy


A Garrison release