IMDb > The Last Laugh (1924)
Der letzte Mann
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The Last Laugh (1924) More at IMDbPro »Der letzte Mann (original title)

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Up 7% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Carl Mayer (written by)
View company contact information for The Last Laugh on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
5 January 1925 (USA) See more »
An aging doorman, after being fired from his prestigious job at a luxurious Hotel is forced to face the scorn of his friends, neighbours and society. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
(141 articles)
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User Reviews:
Not Murnau's best, but a damn fine film anyway See more (53 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Emil Jannings ... Hotelportier [Hotel Doorman]

Maly Delschaft ... Seine Nichte [His Niece]
Max Hiller ... Ihr Bräutigam [Her Bridegroom]
Emilie Kurz ... Tante des Bräutigams [Bridegroom's Aunt]
Hans Unterkircher ... Geschäftsführer [Hotel Manager]
Olaf Storm ... Junger Gast [Young Guest]
Hermann Vallentin ... Spitzbäuchiger Gast [Potbellied Guest]
Georg John ... Nachtwächter [Night Watchman]
Emmy Wyda ... Dünne Nachbarin [Thin Neighbor]
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

O.E. Hasse ... Small Role (uncredited)
Harald Madsen ... Wedding Musician (uncredited)
Neumann-Schüler ... Small Role (uncredited)
Carl Schenstrøm ... Wedding Musician (uncredited)
Erich Schönfelder ... Small role (uncredited)

Directed by
F.W. Murnau 
Writing credits
Carl Mayer (written by)

Produced by
Erich Pommer .... producer
Original Music by
Giuseppe Becce 
Timothy Brock (1992)
Florian C. Reithner 
Karl-Ernst Sasse (1996)
Werner Schmidt-Boelcke 
Cinematography by
Karl Freund (camera)
Film Editing by
Elfi Böttrich (new version)
Production Design by
Edgar G. Ulmer 
Art Direction by
Robert Herlth 
Walter Röhrig 
Costume Design by
G. Benedict (uniforms' designer)
Makeup Department
Waldemar Jabs .... makeup artist (uncredited)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Edgar G. Ulmer .... assistant director
Special Effects by
Ernst Kunstmann .... special effects
Camera and Electrical Department
Robert Baberske .... assistant camera
Günther Rittau .... camera operator
Hans Natge .... still photographer (uncredited)
Music Department
David Beck .... musician: violoncello 1992 score
Timothy Brock .... conductor: 1992 score
Detlev Glanert .... composer: additional music
The Olympia Chamber Orchestra .... music performers: 1992 score
Frank Strobel .... conductor (uncredited)
Crew believed to be complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Der letzte Mann" - Germany (original title)
See more »
77 min | Germany:101 min | Spain:90 min (DVD edition) | USA:90 min | Argentina:101 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Argentina:Atp | Finland:S (1967) | Portugal:M/6 (DVD rating) | Spain:T | UK:U (DVD) | USA:Not Rated
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

The film only uses title cards to explain the job replacement and in the end for the epilogue; but none are ever used for dialog.See more »
Crew or equipment visible: The rope for holding/raising/lowering the trunk is visible as the trunk falls back into the Hotelportier's grasp in the hotel part of the his post-Hochzeit drunken dream.See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in Historia del cine: Epoca muda (1983) (V)See more »


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16 out of 19 people found the following review useful.
Not Murnau's best, but a damn fine film anyway, 13 January 2005
Author: The_Void from Beverley Hills, England

F.W Murnau is best known for his expressionistic horror movies, such as 'Nosferatu' and the excellent 'Faust'. This movie is somewhat different from those, as it's a more personal and down to earth sort of tale. Still, despite this not being a member of the horror genre; Murnau's style still allows for much of the great visuals that made his horror movies great. The story itself has definite horror elements, which although they don't involve vampires or the devil; are arguably more frightening, as it dictates and event that could well happen to anyone. The film tackles the idea of 'downfall', and as the prologue states; one can be a prince one day, but what is he tomorrow? This tale is told through the story of a hotel porter that has worked hard all his life but loses his job through incredible bad luck when the manager catches him taking a break. Heartbroken and humiliated, our hero is offered another job; but it only allows for his humiliation to continue, as the job is that of a lowly bathroom attendant. We then follow his struggle as he comes to terms with his loss and the reaction of his family and neighbours.

F.W. Murnau uses no story cards for this silent film, which shows his flair for storytelling. Imagining some of today's 'great' filmmakers telling a story without dialogue is preposterous, but Murnau shows his prowess by doing just that, and doing it down to a fine art. People often cite 'Citizen Kane' for being the film that took storytelling to the next level, and although it did do that; surely some of the credit has to go to F.W. Murnau. This film features what is perhaps the first ever fantasy sequence, a sequence that is, of course, a favourite of today's cinema. Murnau's technical mastery is also shown in many other sequences, including one in particular that sees a scene appear in the middle of a letter. It's quite unbelievable that this was made over eighty years ago, just due to the amazing work on show in the film.

The film falls down a bit towards the end, because of an ill-advised twist. This was put upon F.W. Murnau by the studio releasing the film, who wanted a happy ending. This is just another example of a studio spoiling a great movie, and even before I saw that piece of information in the trivia section for this movie; it was evident to me that it isn't the way that Murnau wanted to take the story from the way it almost appeared to be tacked on to the end of the film. Still, the hour and ten minutes running up the ending are almost as good as silent cinema gets, and in spite of the studio's best efforts to ruin it; The Last Laugh stands tall as on of Murnau's finest films.

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