IMDb > Michael (1924)
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Michael (1924) More at IMDbPro »

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Up 26% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Herman Bang (based on the novel of the same name by)
Thea von Harbou (adaptation) ...
View company contact information for Michael on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
17 November 1924 (Denmark) See more »
Triangle story: painter, his young male model, unscrupulous princess. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
Early tackling of homosexuality and a surprisingly rich film from the master of the bleak See more (20 total) »


  (in credits order)

Walter Slezak ... Michael
Max Auzinger ... Jules - Majordomo

Nora Gregor ... Princess Lucia Zamikoff
Robert Garrison ... Charles Switt - Journalist

Benjamin Christensen ... Claude Zoret
Didier Aslan ... Duc de Monthieu
Alexander Murski ... Mr. Adelsskjold

Grete Mosheim ... Mrs. Alice Adelsskjold

Karl Freund ... LeBlanc - Art Dealer
Wilhelmine Sandrock ... Widow de Monthieu
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Mady Christians ... Woman (uncredited)

Directed by
Carl Theodor Dreyer  (as Carl-Th. Dreyer)
Writing credits
Herman Bang (based on the novel of the same name by)

Thea von Harbou (adaptation and screenplay) &
Carl Theodor Dreyer (adaptation and screenplay) (as Carl-Th. Dreyer)

Produced by
Erich Pommer .... producer
Original Music by
Hans Joseph Vieth 
Cinematography by
Karl Freund (photographed by)
Rudolph Maté (photographed by)
Costume Design by
Hugo Häring (costumes by)
Art Department
Hugo Häring .... sets
Music Department
Neal Kurz .... music compiler (2004 alternate version)
Neal Kurz .... musician (2004 alternate version)
Other crew
David Shepard .... video producer (2004 alternate version)
Bret Hampton .... with appreciation to (2004 alternate version)
Monica Paulsen .... with appreciation to (2004 alternate version)
Ulrich Ruedel .... with appreciation to (2004 alternate version)
Bret Wood .... with appreciation to (2004 alternate version)

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Chained" - USA
"Chained: The Story of the Third Sex" - USA
See more »
Canada:93 min | USA:86 min (2004 alternate version) | 90 min (20 fps, 2006 restored version)
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Finland:S | USA:TV-14 (TV rating)

Did You Know?

Continuity: When the painter Claude Zoret is talking to Mikael's creditor he switches from standing up to sitting down back to standing up between shots.See more »
[first lines]
Motto (titlecard):Motto: Now I can die in peace for I have known a great love.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in Lord Arthur Savile's Crime (2011)See more »


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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful.
Early tackling of homosexuality and a surprisingly rich film from the master of the bleak, 6 July 2012
Author: tomgillespie2002 from United Kingdom

Famous painter Claude Zoret (Benjamin Christensen) is in love with friend, muse, and model Michael (Walter Slezak). They live comfortably and happily in their mansion, which is littered with Zoret's pieces with Michael as their inspiration. When the bankrupt Countess Lucia Zamikoff (Nora Gregor) comes to visit to ask Zoret to paint her, Zoret accepts but struggles to put any life into his painting. He can't depict her eyes, but Michael steps in and completes the painting. Sensing his infatuation with her, the Countess seduces Michael, and Zoret witnesses his relationship become more and more distant. Michael steals and sells Zoret's sketches and paintings in order to satisfy the Countess' spending habits, and Zoret eventually falls ill.

Although it's hardly tackled explicitly, and more suggested in looks, exchanges, and title-cards than sexual imagery, Michael's tackling of homosexuality was quite revolutionary in its day. Naturally, it failed financially and critically (although when Dreyer made The Passion of Joan of Arc (1928) and became auteur, it has since been re-visited and praised), but it should be a film that any cinephile should see, especially those with an interest in the origins of Queer Cinema and the depiction of homosexuality in film. Benjamin Christensen, perhaps best known as director of the silent docu-horror masterpiece Haxan (1922), is masterful as Zoret, his face darkened with sadness, subtle jealousy, and tragic sentiment. Slazek and Gregor fair less well, and suffer in comparison to Christensen's depiction.

Although the climax is predictable, it has a feeling of inevitably which makes it fittingly moving and quite beautiful, similar in many ways to the ending of Dreyer's Ordet (1955). But the film is surprisingly rich and luscious, with Dreyer's usual blank canvas and bleak settings replaced by detailed sets, all captured by cinematographer's Rudolph Mate and Karl Freund (who appears here as art dealer Le Blanc, and would go on to work on some Universal's finest horror output in the 1930's). A wonderful, 'minor' work in Dreyer's wealthy filmography.

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