Das Testament des Dr. Mabuse

Das Testament des Dr. Mabuse

DVD - 2004 | German
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Locked away in an asylum for a decade and teetering between life and death, the criminal mastermind Dr. Mabuse has scribbled his last will and testament: a manifesto establishing a future empire of crime. When the document's nefarious writings start leading to terrifying parallels in reality, it's up to Berlin's star detective, Inspector Lohmann, to connect the fragmented, maddening clues in a case unlike any other. The Testament of Dr. Mabuse appropriates slogans and ideas from the newly ascendant Nazi party and puts them into the mouth of a madman, warning the audience of the horrible menace that was rapidly becoming a reality.

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m
Monolith
Jun 17, 2013

Kriminalkomissar Lohmann (in the morgue, identifying Dr. Mabuse's corpse): "In the case of Dr. Mabuse, we're not dealing with a human being of any value, but with an evil criminal who only escaped the gallows by entering an insane asylum. One less insane criminal in the world." Professor Baum: "Silence! You have no idea. No one has any idea what kind of phenomenal superhuman mind has come to an end with Dr. Mabuse's death. This mind would have laid waste to our whole rotten world, which is long overdue for destruction. This godless world, devoid of justice, and compassion, consisting only of selfishness, cruelty and hatred. This mind would have destroyed mankind, which itself only knows destruction and extermination, and which could only have been saved in its final hour through terror and horror."

m
Monolith
Jun 17, 2013

Hardy (locking the front door, after the cops have tried to bust into the hideout): "Quick, out the back door!" Diamond Anna: "We don't have one!" Hardy: "You idiots get an apartment with only one exit?"

m
Monolith
Jun 17, 2013

Kriminalkomissar Lohmann (hanging up the telephone, thinking he's lured Professor Baum into a trap): "...If I'm on the right track now, I'm gonna get high as a kite tonight!"

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Bang_On
Nov 06, 2013

This German Crime/Thriller from 1933, which was directed by Fritz Lang, may be somewhat slow-paced and over-long at 121 minutes, but, all the same, it does contain some striking images and is notable for its "expressionistic" camerawork._____ This film also has something of an interesting bit of history behind its release, which saw it banned from being screened in Germany until 1951._____ As the story goes - When Adolph Hitler rose to power in 1933, Joseph Goebbels was appointed Minister of Propaganda. Being in this position of great authority, Goebbels had "Dr. Mabuse" (as well as other films) banned in Germany._____ Goebbels believed that "Dr. Mabuse" was the sort of film that would seriously decrease the audience's confidence in its statesmen since it showed that an extremely dedicated group of people (of the criminal-minded type) were perfectly capable of overthrowing any state with violence (which sounds exactly like what the Nazis did)._____ Needless to say, Lang, who worried greatly about the advent of the Nazi regime, partly because of his Jewish heritage, soon emigrated to France, and, then, in 1936, to Hollywood, USA.

m
Monolith
Jun 17, 2013

A mind-bending, eighty year old, labyrinthine social commentary from Fritz Lang; and an undeniable precursor to Hitler. The film didn't (really) feel dated, and I particularly enjoyed the actor portraying Kriminalkomissar Lohmann. A very sweet love story; and amazingly CREEPY special effects, man! Banned from the get-go by Reich propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels, and for eighteen years to follow in Germany; and essentially resulting in Lang's emigration from his homeland (wise move). (See his '64 German television interview on the companion disk.) FIVE STARS.

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