IMDb > The Golem (1920)
Der Golem, wie er in die Welt kam
Quicklinks
Top Links
trailers and videosfull cast and crewtriviaofficial sitesmemorable quotes
Overview
main detailscombined detailsfull cast and crewcompany credits
Awards & Reviews
user reviewsexternal reviewsawardsuser ratingsparents guide
Plot & Quotes
plot summarysynopsisplot keywordsmemorable quotes
Did You Know?
triviagoofssoundtrack listingcrazy creditsalternate versionsmovie connectionsFAQ
Other Info
box office/businessrelease datesfilming locationstechnical specsliterature listingsNewsDesk
Promotional
taglines trailers and videos posters photo gallery
External Links
showtimesofficial sitesmiscellaneousphotographssound clipsvideo clips

The Golem (1920) More at IMDbPro »Der Golem, wie er in die Welt kam (original title)

Photos (See all 14 | slideshow)

Overview

User Rating:
7.2/10   5,019 votes »
Your Rating:
Saving vote...
Deleting vote...
/10   (delete | history)
Sorry, there was a problem
Popularity: ?
Up 38% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Contact:
View company contact information for The Golem on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
19 June 1921 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
The 1920 Horror Masterpiece.
Plot:
In 16th-century Prague, a rabbi creates the Golem - a giant creature made of clay. Using sorcery, he brings the creature to life in order to protect the Jews of Prague from persecution. | Add synopsis »
NewsDesk:
(21 articles)
Dr. Mabuse The Gambler
 (From Trailers from Hell. 12 September 2016, 3:11 PM, PDT)

Review: "I Love Lucy- The Complete Series" DVD Boxed Set
 (From CinemaRetro. 30 May 2016, 11:43 AM, PDT)

Karloff Enters! The Black Cat (1934)
 (From Trailers from Hell. 27 March 2016, 11:25 AM, PDT)

User Reviews:
Insightful, Important Film See more (43 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Paul Wegener ... Der Golem / The Golem
Albert Steinrück ... Der Rabbi Löw / Rabbi Loew
Lyda Salmonova ... Miriam, des Rabbi Tochter

Ernst Deutsch ... Der Rabbi Famulus
Hans Stürm ... Der Rabbi Jehuda, der Älteste der Gemeinde (as Hanns Sturm)
Max Kronert ... Der Tempeldiener / Temple Servant

Otto Gebühr ... Der Kaiser / Emperor Luhois
Dore Paetzold ... Des Kaisers Kebse
Lothar Müthel ... Der Junker Florian / Knight Florian

Greta Schröder ... Ein Mägdelein mit der Rose / Little Girl with Rose
Loni Nest ... Ein kleines Mädchen / Little Girl
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Carl Ebert ... Temple Servant (uncredited)

Fritz Feld ... Jester (uncredited)
Ursula Nest ... Little Girl (uncredited)

Directed by
Carl Boese 
Paul Wegener 
 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Henrik Galeen 
Paul Wegener 

Produced by
Paul Davidson .... producer
 
Original Music by
Hans Landsberger 
Karl-Ernst Sasse (1977)
Aljoscha Zimmermann (2000)
 
Cinematography by
Karl Freund 
Guido Seeber 
 
Art Direction by
Hans Poelzig 
Kurt Richter 
 
Costume Design by
Rochus Gliese 
 
Art Department
Edgar G. Ulmer .... set designer (uncredited)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Robert Baberske .... assistant camera
 
Music Department
Douglas M. Protsik .... musician: piano (Hypercube restored version)
 

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Der Golem, wie er in die Welt kam" - Germany (original title)
"The Golem: How He Came Into the World" - USA
See more »
Runtime:
Germany:85 min (20 fps) | USA:91 min | USA:101 min (2002 Alpha Video DVD)
Country:
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Lonis sister Ursula was supposed to play the child that destroyed the Golem, but she was too afraid of Paul Wegener in the Golem costume so she was replaced by her older sister Loni for that part. In the final print Ursula was left playing only one of the children.See more »
Goofs:
Miscellaneous: When the Golem is standing with some Knights at the Rosenfest. At the very end of the scene stones or rocks are falling from above and hitting one of the Knights on his head.See more »
Movie Connections:
Featured in Der Fall Metropolis (2003) (V)See more »

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
29 out of 35 people found the following review useful.
Insightful, Important Film, 2 July 2004
Author: FlickeringLight from Boerne, TX

This landmark film is one of the earliest surviving expressionist works, and it's art direction and photography-- while not as stunning as a film like Caligari-- is still extremely interesting with its misshapen sets and its use of light and shadow, and light within shadow. Unlike Caligari, the themes of this film were resonant long after its release, and perhaps still are today.

The Golem is a tolerance film that studies in depth the relationship between Jews and Christians in Prague. To his credit, Wegener refuses to impose stereotypes on either party, instead concentrating on individual characters and using mass characterizations only to highlight the themes of the film.

Unlike stereotypical Jews, rich guys with big noses who rub pennies together, the Jews of Prague are decidedly poor. It is interesting to note that the Jews are all dressed in black and with very few exceptions appear to be bent with age, a tribute to an aging and dying religion. However, they are also portrayed to be earnest and hard-working, with strong communal instincts. The Christians, by contrast, appear bright, shiny, and new. They are dressed in light colors and are young and wealthy, and outwardly appear to be God's new chosen. However, they are also portrayed as foolish bohemians who do not take God seriously. In the end, Christian innocents (and blonde-blue Aryan, coincidentally)are able to stop the Golem's rampage, but only because he allows it. The final shot shows the Star of David lying in the dust as the Jews come to carry their fallen champion back into the ghetto, closing the great door behind them and leaving you with a feeling that they are gone forever. However, it should be noted that the Golem is not only a champion to the Jews, but a symbol of revival.

Another interesting comparison in this film is that between the Golem and Jesus. Like man, the Golem is made of sand and clay, then given life by a supernatural force. They are both immaculate conceptions, with the Golem being motherless while Jesus is born to a virgin mother. Jesus in his time was a champion of the Jews, as is the Golem, and each of them rebelled against the wickedness of the authorities that governed them.

This open-ended presentation of the struggle of Christianity vs. Judaism is what makes this film truly great. I suspect that this relevant elevation above the ordinary is the reason for its survival, even though it is the third film of this series. The fact that Wegener was able to make a film that is so ambiguous is a credit to him considering the circumstances surrounding German film-making at the time.

Rabbi Loew is portrayed as a wise and heroic leader of the Jewish community, which lives in a winding ghetto. He creates the Golem for a noble cause-- to protect his people against eviction by the Christians--and in this cause succeeds after the Christian court is saved by the Golem from divine repudiation after laughing at Loew's presentation of the Old Testament. The creation scene is particularly interesting, not only in its visuals, but for the fact that in this scene Rabbi Loew wears white (for purity), yet performs a ceremony that is holy in nature yet seems like witchcraft. The Golem turns on him when he seeks to continue using the Golem's services for selfish purposes after the Golem has accomplished his mission.

Miriam and Loew's servant are portrayed quite differently. Miriam is a dark seductress who is unwittingly the cause of the Golem's destructive rampage. She is only saved from the hands of the Golem by another act of divine intervention, when the communal prayer of the Jews in the streets of the ghetto results in her release. She usually dresses in dark colors. However, there is also a scene before her affair with Florian in which she wears white (purity of a different kind). Also notice how Florian carelessly twirls a flower when he delivers the edict to Rabbi Loew. This is a brief, but effective, example of his character and foreshadows things to come. Loew's servant is the only other young Jewish character in the film besides a few Jewish children in the street, and it is his revival of the Golem during his jealous rage against Florian that sets the Golem on his destructive path. Like Loew, he is unable to remove the Star of David from the Golem's chest once he begins to use the Golem for selfish gain. In the end, he shares a poignant moment with Miriam where they seek forgiveness and confidence about their actions.

The depth and attention to detail that Wegener shows as a director (and writer) in this film helps to place it among the great films in the brief history of cinema. It's message is particularly haunting considering the events of the next 25 years after its release.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (43 total) »

Recommendations

If you enjoyed this title, our database also recommends:
- - - - -
The Golem The Golem David Godzilla, King of the Monsters! Sunshine
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
Show more recommendations

Related Links

Full cast and crew Company credits External reviews
News articles IMDb Fantasy section IMDb Germany section

You may report errors and omissions on this page to the IMDb database managers. They will be examined and if approved will be included in a future update. Clicking the 'Edit page' button will take you through a step-by-step process.