IMDb > The 3 Penny Opera (1931)
Die 3 Groschen-Oper
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The 3 Penny Opera (1931) More at IMDbPro »Die 3 Groschen-Oper (original title)

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Overview

User Rating:
7.4/10   1,140 votes »
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Up 23% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Writers:
Bertolt Brecht (text by)
Béla Balázs (adaptation) ...
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Contact:
View company contact information for The 3 Penny Opera on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
25 February 1932 (Japan) See more »
Genre:
Plot:
In London at the turn of the century, the bandit Mack the Knife marries Polly without the knowledge of her father, Peachum, the 'king of the beggars'. See more » | Add synopsis »
Awards:
1 win See more »
User Reviews:
Rather a disappointment See more (21 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)
Rudolf Forster ... Mackie Messer
Carola Neher ... Polly
Reinhold Schünzel ... Tiger-Brown
Fritz Rasp ... Peachum
Valeska Gert ... Mrs. Peachum

Lotte Lenya ... Jenny (as Lotte Lenja)
Hermann Thimig ... The Vicar
Ernst Busch ... The Street Singer
Vladimir Sokoloff ... Smith, the Jailer (as Wladimir Sokolow)
Paul Kemp ... Mackie Messer's Gang Member
Gustav Püttjer ... Mackie Messer's Gang Member
Oskar Höcker ... Mackie Messer's Gang Member
Krafft-Raschig ... Mackie Messer's Gang Member (as Kraft Raschig)
Herbert Grünbaum ... Filch
Sylvia Torf ... Whorehouse owner
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Marcel Merminod ... (uncredited)
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Directed by
Georg Wilhelm Pabst  (as G.W. Pabst)
 
Writing credits
Bertolt Brecht (text by) (as Brecht)

Béla Balázs (adaptation) (as Balazs) &
Léo Lania (adaptation) (as Lania) &
Ladislaus Vajda (adaptation) (as Vajda)

Produced by
Seymour Nebenzal .... producer (as S. Nebenzahl)
 
Cinematography by
Fritz Arno Wagner  (as F.A. Wagner)
 
Film Editing by
Jean Oser  (as Hans Oser)
 
Art Direction by
Andrej Andrejew 
 
Costume Design by
Max Pretzfelder 
 
Makeup Department
Paul Dannenberg .... makeup artist (uncredited)
 
Production Management
Wilhelm Löwenberg .... production manager
Gustav Rathje .... unit manager
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Gerbert Rappaport .... assistant director
Marc Sorkin .... assistant director
 
Sound Department
Eugen Hrich .... assistant sound
Adolf Jansen .... sound
H. Meller .... assistant sound
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Robert Baberske .... second camera
Rudolf Brix .... still photographer
Hans G. Casparius .... still photographer
Walter Hrich .... assistant camera
Carl Moeller .... assistant camera
 
Music Department
Theo Mackeben .... musical director
Kurt Weill .... music by: "Die Dreigroschenoper"
 
Other crew
Guido Bagier .... supervisor: Tobis Filmkunst
Gus Schlesinger .... supervisor: Warner Bros.
 
Crew believed to be complete


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Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Die 3 Groschen-Oper" - Germany (original title)
See more »
Runtime:
112 min | France:104 min (censored version) | Spain:106 min (DVD edition)
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.20 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Tobis-Klangfilm)
Certification:
Finland:K-16 (1951) | Finland:(Banned) (1932-1951) | Germany:(Banned) (1934-1945) | USA:Not Rated | West Germany:18 (nf)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
The film was banned by the Nazi Party in 1933 and prints of the film were destroyed. The film was restored and reconstructed in the 1960s.See more »
Movie Connections:
Soundtrack:
Die DreigroschenoperSee more »

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
6 out of 8 people found the following review useful.
Rather a disappointment, 11 May 2009
Author: odresel from Hong Kong

I've just seen the restored 2006 German print, and while I found it entertaining, it's almost as long as the stage musical. The film medium can't support this, and after about the first half hour, it becomes claustrophobic and momentum-less, and a great disappointment. I had to fight the urge to pick up the clicker and press fast-forward. Part of the problem seems to me that the screenplay adapter or adapters didn't trust Brecht and Weill's theatrical instincts sufficiently: they left out half the songs (though the sound is remarkably good for 1931) and reordered the ones that were left. Most problematically, they rewrote the ending, with this nonsense of Polly and the gang taking over a bank. No march to the scaffold, no "Ballad of Sexual Dependency", no last-minute pardon from the King...

Many reviewers here seem to take the London location too seriously. That's just a relic of the John Gay original (The Beggar's Opera): it is most clearly meant to be a satire on Weimar Republic Germany. That's why the Nazis banned it. The real corruption is in the official institutions of power, not in the relatively benign underworld (which reappears in very similar shape and form in Fritz Lange's "M".) Those who don't know Brecht's translations of Gay's original names and texts should learn that MacHeath becomes 'Mackie Messer' (messer mean 'knife' in German, thus 'Mack the Knife'.)

The best thing about the film, is probably the documentary record it contains of just how the original audiences would have seen the story, and how the original performers would have rendered the songs. I particularly liked the Moritaet-Saenger and his incredible trilled "Rs" in the opening scene.

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