7.9/10
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Mephisto (1981)

Unrated | | Drama | 22 March 1982 (USA)
A German stage actor finds unexpected success and mixed blessings in the popularity of his performance in a Faustian play as the Nazis take power in pre-WWII Germany. As his associates and ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Won 1 Oscar. Another 13 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Barbara Bruckner
Ildikó Bánsági ...
Nicoletta von Niebuhr
Rolf Hoppe ...
Tábornagy
...
Hans Miklas
Péter Andorai ...
Otto Ulrichs
Karin Boyd ...
Juliette Martens
Christine Harbort ...
Lotte Lindenthal
Tamás Major ...
Oskar Kroge, színigazgató
Ildikó Kishonti ...
Dora Martin, primadonna
Mária Bisztrai ...
Motzné, tragika
Sándor Lukács ...
Rolf Bonetti, bonviván
Ágnes Bánfalvy ...
Angelika Siebert, naiva (as Bánfalvi Ágnes)
Judit Hernádi ...
Rachel Mohrenwitz, drámai szende
Vilmos Kun ...
Ügyelõ
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Storyline

A German stage actor finds unexpected success and mixed blessings in the popularity of his performance in a Faustian play as the Nazis take power in pre-WWII Germany. As his associates and friends flee or are ground under by the Nazi terror, the popularity of his character supercedes his own existence until he finds that his best performance is keeping up appearances for his Nazi patrons. Written by Keith Loh <loh@sfu.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Language:

| |

Release Date:

22 March 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Mefisto  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

István Szabó: A guest wearing a tuxedo on the theater reception party near the end of the film, complaining about the unnecessary expenses of the luxurious party. See more »

Goofs

As Hoefgen crosses a street, a car passes in front of him. The crew is reflected in the car's window. See more »

Quotes

Hendrik Hoefgen: Am I not the most dreadful villain you have seen?
See more »

Connections

Featured in Zomergasten: Episode #5.1 (1992) See more »

Soundtracks

Lumpenlied
Music by Béla Reinitz (as Reinitz)
Lyrics by Erich Mühsam
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Mephisto or Faust?

This film faithfully recreates the novel written in 1936 by Klaus Mann. It is a reflection of the age old temptation of Man, the story of Goethe's Faust. Karl Maria Brandauer is magnificent as Hendrik Höfgen, the obsessed "actor" who will do anything to gain wealth and fame. He first betrays the world around him, and then his inner values are swept away as he finally enters the inner sanctum of Nazi Germany. Is true theatre on stage or in the handshake that Höfgen makes in the prime minister's box behind the audience? Everything in this movie revolves around Höfgen's downward spiral into the abyss; the initial ascent to stardom was but an illusion. Mann instinctively knew that tragedy would befall his country when a pact was made between Hitler and the financial, industrial and military élites of Germany - remember the book was written nine years before that country's downfall. View the movie and read the book. Two truly artistic achievements! Thumbs up to István Szabó and K.M. Brandauer who managed to reveal everything in Höfgen's character.


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