IMDb > Pandora's Box (1929)
Die Büchse der Pandora
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Pandora's Box (1929) More at IMDbPro »Die Büchse der Pandora (original title)

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Release Date:
22 February 1930 (Japan) See more »
The rise and inevitable fall of an amoral but naive young woman whose insouciant eroticism inspires lust and violence in those around her. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
1 nomination See more »
(318 articles)
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User Reviews:
A natural in action See more (81 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Louise Brooks ... Lulu
Fritz Kortner ... Dr. Ludwig Schön

Francis Lederer ... Alwa Schön (as Franz Lederer)
Carl Goetz ... Schigolch
Krafft-Raschig ... Rodrigo Quast
Alice Roberts ... Gräfin Geschwitz - Countess Anna Geschwitz
Daisy D'Ora ... Charlotte Marie Adelaide v. Zarnikow - braut Dr. Schöns - Dr. Schön's Bride (as Daisy d'Ora)
Gustav Diessl ... Jack the Ripper (as Gustav Diesel)
Michael von Newlinsky ... Marquis Casti-Piani (as Michael v. Newlinsky)
Sig Arno ... Der inspizient - the Stage Manager (as Siegfried Arno)

Directed by
Georg Wilhelm Pabst 
Writing credits
Frank Wedekind (plays "Erdgeist" and "Die Büchse der Pandora")

Ladislaus Vajda (scenario)

Joseph Fleisler  titles (uncredited)
Georg Wilhelm Pabst  uncredited

Produced by
Heinz Landsmann .... producer
Seymour Nebenzal .... producer (uncredited)
Original Music by
Stuart Oderman (1986)
Peer Raben (1997)
William P. Perry (uncredited)
Cinematography by
Günther Krampf 
Film Editing by
Joseph Fleisler (uncredited)
Art Direction by
Andrej Andrejew  (as Andrejew)
Gottlieb Hesch  (as Hesch)
Ernö Metzner (uncredited)
Costume Design by
Gottlieb Hesch (uncredited)
Production Management
Georg C. Horetsky .... production manager (as Georg C. Horsetzky)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Marc Sorkin .... assistant director
Paul Falkenberg .... assistant director (uncredited)
Art Department
Marcel Tuszkay .... graphic designer
Visual Effects by
Andrei Dimitriu .... digital compositor (restoration)
Tobias Wiedmer .... digital compositor (restoration)
Music Department
Frank Strobel .... conductor (1997)
Frank Strobel .... music editor (1997)

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Die Büchse der Pandora" - Germany (original title)
"The Box of Pandora" - International (English title)
See more »
Germany:133 min (restored version) | USA:109 min | Belgium:152 min (Copy with French titles at Brussels Musée du Cinéma) | 131 min (original version) (21.4 fps) | 110 min (VHS version)
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Argentina:13 | Australia:PG | Finland:(Banned) (1929) | Germany:(Banned) (1933-1945) | Norway:(Banned) (1929) | Portugal:M/12 (DVD rating) | Portugal:17 (original release) | Portugal:(Banned) (1936-1945) | Sweden:(Banned) | UK:PG (1993) | UK:A (1929) | USA:Not Rated | USA:TV-PG (TV rating)

Did You Know?

In her biography, Louise Brooks says she was physically attracted to Gustav Diessl, who played Jack the Ripper, and that made it easy for her to play her scenes with him.See more »
Revealing mistakes: The poster warning Londoners of Jack the Ripper is in German instead of English.See more »
Alwa Schön:It's strange how you can get booze on credit but not bread.See more »


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23 out of 25 people found the following review useful.
A natural in action, 26 December 2002
Author: tprofumo from Los Angeles

Louise Brooks may have never studied acting, but every actor should study her. How much they can learn is questionable though. This dancer/chorus girl turned film star was one of those rare creatures who probably couldn't have told you what she was doing, even if she thought long and hard about it (and Brooks was an intelligent, articulate woman.)

Like a great natural athlete, she simply could do it, and do it better than almost anyone else. Pandora's Box is the greatest existing record of her technique and remarkable talents.

On the surface, a run of the mill story of a femme fatale who destroys the men around her, this G. W. Pabst film is complicated, dark, moody, and seemingly packed with contradictory messages. Well acted and well directed by Pabst, it nonetheless would have been forgotten decades ago, had it not been for its star.

Brooks was one of the most beautiful, most photogenic woman to ever appear on the screen. From some angles, her face is so remarkable it almost doesn't seem real.

Her personality exceeds her beauty and it was the perfect personality to capture the childish, petulant, self centered, yet sweetly innocent kid who is the embodiment of every pretty girl who wants what she wants, regardless of the consequences.

Pabst' film, based on two German stage plays, is also a fascinating look at male sexual obsession, at men unable to control their lust who want to destroy the object of that lust before she destroys them.

Yet all the messages aside, it is simply Brooks totally natural performance that in the end will be remembered here.

Ironically, Brooks was really no more than a starlet in her American silent film days and it took her three European films to elevate her name above the title. And those films were hardly seen in the U.S. in their day. Yet today, women whose names were household words in America in the silent era, like Coleen Moore and even Clara Bow, are all but forgotten, while the Brooks legend grows stronger each year.

While Brooks has benefitted from a well written biography and the adoration of much of the press, a close examination of Pandora's Box proves she was much more than just hype.

This movie is one of the great treasures of the cinema, and Louise Brooks is one of the most talented and most fascinating actresses to ever appear in movies, on either side of the Atlantic.

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