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Metropolis (1927)

Not Rated | | Drama, Sci-Fi | 13 March 1927 (USA)
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In a futuristic city sharply divided between the working class and the city planners, the son of the city's mastermind falls in love with a working class prophet who predicts the coming of a savior to mediate their differences.

Director:

Fritz Lang

Writers:

Thea von Harbou (screenplay), Thea von Harbou (novel)
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Top Rated Movies #106 | 6 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview:
Alfred Abel ... Johann (Joh) Fredersen
Gustav Fröhlich ... Freder Fredersen - Joh Fredersens Sohn
Rudolf Klein-Rogge ... Erfinder C.A. Rotwang / The Inventor
Fritz Rasp ... Der Schmale / The Thin Man
Theodor Loos ... Josaphat / Joseph
Erwin Biswanger Erwin Biswanger ... 11811 - Georgy
Heinrich George ... Grot -Wärter der Herzmaschine / Guardian of the Heart Machine
Brigitte Helm ... Maria / Maschinenmensch / The Machine Man
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Storyline

Sometime in the future, the city of Metropolis is home to a Utopian society where its wealthy residents live a carefree life. One of those is Freder Fredersen. One day, he spots a beautiful woman with a group of children, she and the children quickly disappear. Trying to follow her, he is horrified to find an underground world of workers who apparently run the machinery that keeps the Utopian world above ground functioning. One of the few people above ground who knows about the world below is Freder's father, John Fredersen, who is the founder and master of Metropolis. Freder learns that the woman is called Maria, who espouses the need to join the "hands" - the workers - to the "head" - those in power above - by a mediator who will act as the "heart". Freder wants to help the plight of the workers in their struggle for a better life. But when John learns of what Maria is advocating and that Freder has joined their cause, with the assistance of an old colleague. an inventor called ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

There can be no understanding between the hands and the brain unless the heart acts as mediator. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Germany

Language:

German

Release Date:

13 March 1927 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Metropolis See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

DEM 6,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$19,386, 14 July 2002

Gross USA:

$1,236,166
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universum Film (UFA) See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (re-release) | (1927 cut) | (2002 Murnau Foundation 75th aniversary restored) | (Giorgio Moroder)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital (1995 restored version)| Silent (original release)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Film included more than 37,000 extras including 25,000 men, 11,000 women, 1,100 bald men, 750 children, 100 dark-skinned people and 25 Asians. 310 shooting days were required. See more »

Goofs

When Maria is pulling the levers to activate the gong, she acts as if they were hard to move. Yet in several shots the levers are actually loose and move quite freely (especially when Maria or one of the kids bumps them). See more »

Quotes

Worker #3: Get your women, your sons, from the worker's city! Let no one stay behind! Death to the machines - !
See more »

Crazy Credits

Restoration based on the version in the Filmmuseum Munich and material preserved in the Bundesarchiv-Filmarchiv See more »

Alternate Versions

One version shown on television in the 1980s contains as the soundtrack Steve Reich's original recording of "Music for 18 Musicians". See more »


Soundtracks

Cage of Freedom
Music by Giorgio Moroder
Lyrics by Pete Bellotte
Performed by Jon Anderson
Courtesy of Columbia Records
(from the 1984 re-release)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
So old…and yet so futuristic!
25 August 2005 | by CoventrySee all my reviews

Fritz Lang's groundbreaking landmark remains one of the biggest mysteries in the world of cinema. How can a movie that'll soon turn 80 years old still look so disturbingly futuristic?? The screenplay by Thea Von Harbou is still very haunting and courageously assails social issues that are of all ages. The world has been divided into two main categories: thinkers & workers! If you belong to the first category, you can lead a life of luxury above ground but if you're a worker, your life isn't worth a penny, and you're doomed to perilous labor underground. The further expansions and intrigues in the screenplay are too astonishing to spoil, so I strongly advise that you check out the film yourself. It's essential viewing, anyway! "Metropolis" is a very demanding film-experience and definitely not always entertaining. But, as it is often the case with silent-cinema classics, the respect and admiration you'll develop during watching it will widely excel the enjoyment-aspect. Fritz' brutal visual style still looks innovative and few directors since were able to re-create a similarly nightmarish composition of horizontal and vertical lines. Many supposedly 'restored' versions have been released over the years (in 1984 and 2002, for example) but the 1926-version is still the finest in my opinion, even though that one already isn't as detailed and punctual as Lang intended it. "Metropolis" perhaps is THE most important and influential movie ever made. "2001: A Space Odyssey", "Star Wars" and "Blade Runner" owe their existence (or at least their power) to it.


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