From its roots in the 19th century to its full flowering in the 20th, existentialism has made a profound impression on the course of modern history. This powerful three-part series profiles the lives and critically examines the contributions of proto-existentialist Friedrich Nietzsche; Martin Heidegger; and Jean-Paul Sartre, under whom it ripened to its fullest expression. 3-part series, 50 minutes each.
Human, All Too Human is a three-part 1999 documentary television series produced by the BBC. It follows the lives of three prominent philosophers; Friedrich Nietzsche, Martin Heidegger, and Jean-Paul Sartre. The theme of this documentary revolves heavily around the school of philosophical thought known as existentialism, although the term had not been coined at the time of Nietzsche's writing, and Heidegger declaimed the label. The documentary is named after the 1878 book written by Nietzsche, titled Human, All Too Human: A Book for Free Spirits.
Each episode runs at 60 minutes, for a total length of three hours. The first episode is titled Beyond Good and Evil, which is about Friedrich Nietzsche and his gradual shift from religion, to nihilism, and finally to insanity. His sister presented the National Socialists (Nazis) with heavily modified versions of Nietzsche's writings that were interpreted as a pro-Nazi agenda; to advance the superior race of the Übermensch, the "superman", the perfect Aryan.
Design for Living is the next episode that centers around Martin Heidegger, who improved upon the writings and ideas of Nietzsche to better understand individual human freedom. Before and after the reign of the Nazis in Germany, Heiddeger spent much of his time living in solitude in the hill of Todtnauberg to allow himself to clear his mind and better focus on his own philosophy. Due to the fact that he joined the Nazis during World War II, his works were dismissed by his critics as Nazi propaganda.
The final episode in this series, The Road to Freedom, describes the life of the French philosopher, Jean-Paul Sartre. This is when the term existentialism begins to enter the realm of philosophy. The documentary shows that Sartre believes it is up to each individual human being to give his or her own life a meaning and a purpose.