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Paganini (1989)

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Klaus Kinski believed that he lived through the same experiences as the legendary "devil violinist" Niccolò Paganini, who set all of nineteenth-century Europe into a frenzy and through ... See full summary »



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Title: Paganini (1989)

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After a man's wife is killed by a panther his only reason to live becomes revenge which slowly consumes him.

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Directors: Franco Castellano, Giuseppe Moccia
Stars: Jerry Calà, Debora Caprioglio, Serena Grandi


Credited cast:
Debora Caprioglio ...
Antonia Bianchi (as Debora Kinski)
Dalila Di Lazzaro ...
Helene von Feuerbach
Tosca D'Aquino ...
Angiolina Cavanna
Eva Grimaldi ...
Marie Anna Elise Bonaparte
Beba Balteano ...
Carol Watson
Fabio Carfora ...
Mr. Watson
Donatella Rettore ...
Miss Wells
Bernard Blier ...
Pater Caffarelli
André Thorent ...
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Feodor Chaliapin Jr.
Vittorio Ciorcalo
Niels Gullov


Klaus Kinski believed that he lived through the same experiences as the legendary "devil violinist" Niccolò Paganini, who set all of nineteenth-century Europe into a frenzy and through whose personality Kinski offers an incredibly profound and honest insight into his own life; a life of extremities. Written by

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


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Parents Guide:



Official Sites:




Release Date:

25 May 1990 (Italy)  »

Also Known As:

Paganini  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (director's cut)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Klaus Kinski wanted Werner Herzog to direct, but he turned it down. See more »


Referenced in My Best Fiend (1999) See more »

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User Reviews

A Diamond, brilliant; Ageless, Timeless; Catching & Breaking Light in a 1001 Ways
23 June 2003 | by (amsterdam) – See all my reviews

The tagline is not referring to the (too) many flairs in this film. This is not a film, but a myriad. Not unlike Tarkovsky's 'Mirror', the storyline is labyrinthic. In 'Paganini' we are plunged into the flow of life as seen just before dying, and within the flashbacks there are memories.

Son Achille, superbly played by son Nikolai Kinksi (without any hint of the lingual barriers that he must have experienced while shooting this demanding role; check out his role in 'Tortilla Soup', the Ang Lee goes Latin comedy where he plays very nicely a ... Brazilian.) watches the struggle of his father, adding his own reminiscence to the story.

Fragmented though it may be, this is a romantic tale, grand & tragic, told with passion and devotion. It took Klaus Kinski 20 years to create his heart's desire. So, I reckon, there are not many "mistakes", "loose ends", "murkiness" or "shabby editing" here. My guess is that all we see is well thought of (referring to the 'version originale' of Kinski himself, as to be seen on the German double disc DVD -with Italian, English & German dubs-, which shows besides loads of exciting extras both the Maestro's version as the producer's vulgarity). It is too easy to criticize. Who understood 'The Mirror' after a few viewings only ?

Kinski of course is no Tarkovsky. He is Maestro Klaus, and very probable the reincarnation of Paganini. But his Magnus Epos is not just an homage. It is even more than his life quest. Although Papa Klaus is omnipresent & inescapable, the torch is held by his son. Which makes KK a link between past & future. And that is truly amazing. Mr. Kinski, miracle-man.

PS:The story within the story of this story has not finished yet. Maybe one day someone close to the heart and mind of Klaus Kinski will dare and cut a 2hour-version of 'Paganini'. Maybe Mr. Nikolai ?

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