Young Princess Sophia of Germany is taken to Russia to marry the half-wit Grand Duke Peter, son of the Empress. The domineering Empress hopes to improve the royal blood line. Sophia doesn't... See full summary »
Film told in flashbacks of an older man's obsession for a woman who can belong to no-one but can frustrate everyone. The backdrop is SternbergÍs surreal and fantastic Carnaval in Spain. In ... See full summary »
Josef von Sternberg
Edward Everett Horton
Germany 1924. Middle aged Dr. Immanuel Rath is a literature professor at a boys college. Most of his students don't much like him, often calling him "unrath" - German for garbage. Dr. Rath learns that many of his boys often frequent a cabaret called Der blaue Engel - the Blue Angel - which he believes is corrupting their impressionable young minds. He heads to the Blue Angel himself to catch the boys in the act and shame them into not going again. Over several visits, Rath is able to catch the boys, but in the process he also understands what attracts the boys, namely the headlining performer Lola Lola. Rath falls under Lola's spell, he who falls in love with her - and she seemingly with him - so much so that he wants to marry her and give up his teaching career to be with her on her travels from cabaret to cabaret. Their relationship ends up not being what either envisioned, the question being how they will both deal with their disintegrating relationship and the reasons behind that ... Written by
This movie should merit a place in the upper region of the 250 top movies, somewhere in the neighborhood of "Citizen Kane" and "Twelve Angry Men". Apparently it is not very well known in the USA.
In Germany and in countries where the German language is rather familiar, it is rightly considered as one of the classics of cinema.
Amazing, that Sternberg, only a couple of years after the invention of the "talky" could produce a masterpiece that has seldom been surpassed. It was this movie that launched the carreer of Marlene Dietrich, with her famous song "Ich bin von Kopf bis Fuss auf Liebe eingestellt".
I had seen the movie many years ago. When I saw it for the second time about a year ago, I realized that Emile Jennings acting, as the rather silly teacher at the local grammar school who sacrifies his career because of a cabaret girl, was not less impressive than that of Marlene Dietrich. A pity that I did never see another film with this great actor.
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