IMDb > M (1931)
M
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Overview

User Rating:
8.5/10   74,305 votes »
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Director:
Writers:
Thea von Harbou (script) and
Fritz Lang (script)
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for M on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
31 August 1931 (Sweden) See more »
Genre:
Plot:
When the police in a German city are unable to catch a child-murderer, other criminals join in the manhunt. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
1 win See more »
User Reviews:
German Expressionism at its cinematic best See more (254 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Peter Lorre ... Hans Beckert
Ellen Widmann ... Frau Beckmann
Inge Landgut ... Elsie Beckmann
Otto Wernicke ... Inspector Karl Lohmann
Theodor Loos ... Inspector Groeber
Gustaf Gründgens ... Schränker
Friedrich Gnaß ... Franz, the burglar
Fritz Odemar ... The cheater
Paul Kemp ... Pickpocket with six watches
Theo Lingen ... Bauernfänger
Rudolf Blümner ... Beckert's defender
Georg John ... Blind panhandler
Franz Stein ... Minister
Ernst Stahl-Nachbaur ... Police chief
Gerhard Bienert ... Criminal secretary
Karl Platen ... Damowitz, night watchman
Rosa Valetti ... Elisabeth Winkler, Beckert's landlady
Hertha von Walther ... Prostitute
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Behal Carrell ... (uncredited)
Josef Dahmen ... (uncredited)
J.A. Eckhoff ... (uncredited)
Else Ehser ... Woman (uncredited)
Karl Elzer ... (uncredited)
Ilse Fürstenberg ... (uncredited)
Anna Goltz ... Woman (uncredited)
Heinrich Gotho ... (uncredited)
Heinrich Gretler ... Man (uncredited)
Günther Hadank ... (uncredited)
Albert Hoermann ... (uncredited)
Ellen Isenta ... Woman (uncredited)
Karl Junge-Swinburne ... Man (uncredited)
Albert Karchow ... (uncredited)
Werner Kepich ... (uncredited)
Hermann Krehan ... (uncredited)
Kurth Leeser ... (uncredited)
Rose Lichtenstein ... (uncredited)
Lotte Loebinger ... Woman (uncredited)
Sigurd Lohde ... (uncredited)
Alfred Loretto ... Man (uncredited)
Hanna Maron ... Girl in circle at the beginning (uncredited)
Paul Mederow ... (uncredited)
Margarete Melzer ... (uncredited)
Trude Moos ... (uncredited)
Hadrian Maria Netto ... (uncredited)
Günter Neumann ... Man (uncredited)
Neumann-Schüler ... Bit Role (uncredited)
Katharina Nied ... Women (uncredited)
Maya Norden ... (uncredited)
Fred Nurney ... Man (uncredited)
Edgar Pauly ... Man (uncredited)
Klaus Pohl ... Witness / one-eyed man (uncredited)
Franz Poland ... (uncredited)
Eduard Rebane ... Man (uncredited)
Paul Rehkopf ... (uncredited)
Bertold Reissig ... Man (uncredited)
Ernst Rhaden ... Man (uncredited)
Hans Ritter ... (uncredited)
Max Sablotzki ... Man (uncredited)
Agnes Schulz-Lichterfeld ... (uncredited)
Leonard Steckel ... Man (uncredited)
Wolf Trutz ... (uncredited)
Otto Waldis ... (uncredited)
Borwin Walth ... (uncredited)
Rolf Wanka ... Man (uncredited)
Bruno Ziener ... (uncredited)
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Directed by
Fritz Lang 
 
Writing credits
Thea von Harbou (script) and
Fritz Lang (script)

Egon Jacobson  article (uncredited)

Produced by
Seymour Nebenzal .... producer (uncredited)
 
Cinematography by
Fritz Arno Wagner 
 
Film Editing by
Paul Falkenberg 
 
Art Direction by
Emil Hasler 
Karl Vollbrecht 
 
Makeup Department
Wilhelm Weber .... makeup artist
 
Production Management
Ernst Wolff .... production manager
Gustav Rathje .... unit manager (uncredited)
 
Art Department
Edgar G. Ulmer .... set designer (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
Paul Falkenberg .... sound editor
Adolf Jansen .... sound
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Robert Baberske .... second camera operator
Horst von Harbou .... still photographer
Erwin Hillier .... assistant camera (uncredited)
Károly Vass .... assistant camera (uncredited)
 
Crew believed to be complete


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Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
117 min | 110 min (2004 Criterion DVD edition) | France:118 min | Germany:105 min (2000 restored version) | Germany:108 min (re-release) | USA:99 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.20 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:
Argentina:13 | Australia:PG (DVD rating) | Australia:M (original rating) | Finland:K-12 (1995) | Finland:K-16 (1960) | Finland:(Banned) (1933) | Germany:12 (re-rating) | Germany:16 (video rating) | Germany:12 (re-rating) (2006) | Germany:(Banned) (1933-1945) | Netherlands:12 (2006) | Netherlands:18 (re-rating) (1959) | Netherlands:18 (original rating) (1931) | Norway:15 (1995) | Norway:16 (original rating) (1931) | Portugal:17 | Portugal:M/12 (re-rating) | South Korea:15 (DVD) | Spain:13 | Sweden:15 | UK:PG | USA:Not Rated | USA:TV-14 | West Germany:16 (bw) (nf)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Alexanderplatz (the Alex) was the site of the headquarters of the Berlin Police Department.See more »
Quotes:
Hans Beckert:I can't help what I do! I can't help it, I can't...
Criminal:The old story! We never can help it in court!
Hans Beckert:What do you know about it? Who are you anyway? Who are you? Criminals? Are you proud of yourselves? Proud of breaking safes or cheating at cards? Things you could just as well keep your fingers off. You wouldn't need to do all that if you'd learn a proper trade or if you'd work. If you weren't a bunch of lazy bastards. But I... I can't help myself! I have no control over this, this evil thing inside of me, the fire, the voices, the torment!
[...]
See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in Get Bruce (1999)See more »
Soundtrack:
Le Halle du Roi de la MontagneSee more »

FAQ

How much sex, violence, and profanity are in this movie?
Is this movie based on a real person?
Is it true that there is a comic book based on "M"?
See more »
66 out of 86 people found the following review useful.
German Expressionism at its cinematic best, 2 May 2003
Author: FilmOtaku (ssampon@hotmail.com) from Milwaukee, WI

Being a huge fan of German Expressionist art, I'm naturally drawn to the films of Fritz Lang. I recently was able to see the restored version of "Metropolis" on the big screen, and was delighted to see "M" on the Sundance channel - especially since it was the uncut version. M follows the trail of a child killer (Peter Lorre), sought both by the police and the members of the underworld whose businesses are being effected by the investigation.

This film is ground-breaking for many reasons: It is Fritz Lang's first talking picture, it is one of the first in the serial killer genre and it was overtly anti-Nazi. This film was banned in Germany shortly after it premiered, and Fritz Lang and Peter Lorre, both Jews, soon fled the country. It has superb acting (most notably, Peter Lorre's trial scene in the catacombs) and very stark yet at times gritty cinematography. The story is indeed suspenseful and at times, very creepy (what whistling child killer isn't?). The entire movie, however is extremely thought-provoking and challenging, much like the German Expressionist movement itself.

This is not a movie for everyone; some may find it boring, some may find it too abstract. It also has one of the most bizarre shots I've ever seen in film - essentially it's a 30 second shot of the police inspector talking on the phone, but you're under his desk and looking up his pants leg. It actually kind of baffled me and made me chuckle for a second, but it was avant garde if anything.

To those who appreciate early cinema that truly makes you think, both about the film and the subtext with which it was written and filmed, it is a must-see.

--Shelly

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Not convincing Chris_TC
Sentenced to death? sad-tomato
OT: what modern film would you compare to M? Philds15
Was this ever dubbed in English? mrmuggles
Well, It's no Scarlet Street marhefka
Empathy? Really? martha-butterflycaught
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