Two bank robbers hold the clerks hostage and demand 3 million German marks as ransom. What the police do not realise is that the true criminal mastermind watches them from outside the bank, anticipating every move.
A rich industrialist is brutally kidnapped. While he physically and mentally degenerates in imprisonment, the kidnappers, police and the board of the company of which he is director negotiate about the ransom of 50 million euro.
A Jewish ghetto in the east of Europe, 1944. By coincidence, Jakob Heym eavesdrops on a German radio broadcast announcing the Soviet Army is making slow by steady progress towards central ... See full summary »
Walter Faber has survived a crash with an airplane. His next trip is by ship. On board this ship he meets the enchanting Sabeth and they have a passionate love affair. Together they travel ... See full summary »
A young shoemaker is arrested for stealing a small amount of money, and is released after being jailed for 15 years. He wants to have a pass to get a job and start anew, but without a job ... See full summary »
Beatrice is a very reserved and quiet young woman. Her friend Marylene is left by her lover and brings her to Cabourg (Normandy) for a few days' vacation. There, Beatrice, an apprentice ... See full summary »
Immediate background: After "the crimson pirate" and a -failed-remake of Feyder's "Le Grand Jeu" in France,Robert Siodmak was back in Germany.He did not direct in his native land for more than twenty years,since "Brennendes Geheimnis" .In between,he made brilliant movies ,some of them are among the classics of film noir.
Siodmak finds back a humiliated country .He came in blaring in 1929 with "Menschen am Sonntag" and with "die Ratten" came back the same way.He was helped by two of the most talented German thespians of the era: Maria Schell and Cürd Jurgens plus a fine supporting cast including Gustav Knuth people outside Germany know essentially as Sissi's father in the famous Marischka saga.
The prologue sets the tone: a distraught frenzied Schell tries to get to Berlin West.When the soldiers stop her,they discover she's holding a rag doll.The film is a long flashback.
Siodmak depicts a murky atmosphere ,with mean characters ,the rats.The subject is that of the great melodramas of the forties ,but the director displays a gutsy realism which is more European.
Memorable scenes: The bric a brac in M.John's house where his brother-in-law is doing bad things behind his back and where Pauline gives birth to her child.
The baptism and the funeral of two children,two scenes which recall Abel Gance's "Venus Aveugle"(1942) The walk through the Christmas market(Siodmak often uses the pom-pom of the fairground music ,notably during the cast and credits) where Pauline buys a teddy bear.
The ball of the new year's eve when a Singerin is bawling out a horrible ditty about having fun.
Siodmak seems to remember his earlier films such as "Voruntersuchung" ( a contrast between the tragedy and the fair and the fireworks where people rejoice) and "Stürme der Leidenschaft" aka" Tumultes" (the knife).
Like this? try These....
"The old maid" Edmund Goulding 1939
"The great lie" EDmund Goulding 1941
"To each his own" Mitchell Leisen 1946
"La voleuse" Jean Chapot 1966 (starring Romy Schneider)
15 of 15 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?