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Testament of Dr Mabuse

Released January 1, 1933 (USA), Directed by Fritz Lang

With black and white storytelling, director Fritz Lang (1890-1976) is the place to see an advanced sense of the skill displayed. He made many color films during his long career, but of particular interest should be the black and white silent films like Metropolis, and early sound films like M and (especially) Testament of Dr. Mabuse. This last film is "special" because it uses unusual visual techniques which seem perfectly suited to comic books.

The film is available on DVD from the usual places, but it shows up on Turner Classic Movies from time to time - - it is a German movie with English subtitles, as is "M." Lang also made english-language noir films like Hangmen Also Die, Ministry of Fear and Clash by Night. He moved to Hollywood after more or less running for his life when the Nazis took control of Germany in he early 1930s. Lang's Testament of Dr. Mabuse seems to be something of a poke in the eye at Nazi party politics, though I have read (but did not notice as I watched the movie) that there is direct commentary toward the Nazis specifically - - so no wonder Lang had to get out of town in a hurry.

AMAZON: The Testament of Dr. Mabuse (The Criterion Collection)

Original Page Sep 29, 2014 | Updated Dec 2017

Letters from Hollywood Book

Letters from Hollywood: Inside the Private World of Classic American Movemaking

352 pages - Published by Harry N. Abrams

"This is, quite simply, one of the finest books I’ve ever read about Hollywood." Leonard Maltin

Reproduces in full color scores of entertaining and insightful pieces of correspondence from some of the most notable and talented film industry names of all time—from the silent era to the golden age, and up through the pre-email days of the 1970s. Annotated by the authors to provide backstories and further context. Greta Garbo, Alfred Hitchcock, Humphrey Bogart, Frank Sinatra, Katharine Hepburn, Marlon Brando, Elia Kazan, Cary Grant, Francis Ford Coppola, Tom Hanks, and Jane Fonda.

Letters from Hollywood: Inside the Private World of Classic American Movemaking

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