The likeable and carefree Grand Duke of Abacco is in dire straits. There is no money left to service the State's debt; the main creditor is looking forward to expropriating the entire Duchy... See full summary »
In the castle Vogeloed, a few aristocrats are awaiting baroness Safferstätt. But first count Oetsch invites himself.. Everyone thinks he murdered his brother, baroness Safferstat's first ... See full summary »
When farmer Rog dies, his son Peter stays, but Johannes can not be satisfied with such a condition (and servant Maria's love) and finds a job as old Count Rudenberg's secretary. His ... See full summary »
Dr Eigil Borne is engaged to Hélène, a girl who is madly in love with him. At Hélène's birthday celebration, Eigil invites her to a cabaret, where he meets his other love, Lily, a passionate, fiery and funny dancer.
Wilton, a hunchback, who was always scorned and ridiculed by women, returns from Java a rich man after having discovered a diamond mine. He romances Gina, who is on the rebound from a ... See full summary »
Based on Moliere's classic seventeenth century comedy, this version of TARTUFFE has the eponymous antihero (Emil Jannings) being ultimately outwitted by the family; at the same time the head of the family Orgon (Werner Krauss) remains as blissfully unaware of how to distinguish truth from falsity as he did at the beginning. F. W. Murnau's version is set in a large, rambling house, full of wide staircases and plenty of doors. He proves himself a master of the camera; his close-ups focusing on the pockets as Tartuffe stashes away his ill-gotten gains while pretending to embrace religion, or on Elmire's (Lil Dagover's) breasts, as Tartuffe tries and fails to keep his hands from touching them. Jannings is given full rein to show off his range of facial expressions as Tartuffe; here is a genuinely evil man who believes he can do anything under the cloak of religion. What makes this TARTUFFE most interesting, at least for students of history, is the specially-added prologue and epilogue, in which a young man (André Mattoni) shows his wealthy grandfather (Hermann Picha) the film of TARTUFFE, in order to alert him to the old man's hypocritical governess (Rosa Valetti), and her designs on his fortune. The young man is impoverished, but shown to be much more able to understand human behavior than his grandfather. Through this device Murnau takes a pot-shot at how capitalism and wealth often destroys judgment, creating a covetous society in which everyone is out for themselves. This could be a microcosm of Germany in the mid- Twenties, before the Nazi accession to power. This TARTUFFE moves along at a brisk pace, complemented by a jaunty soundtrack. Worth watching.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this