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The Student of Prague (1913)

Der Student von Prag (original title)
Balduin, a student of Prague, leaves his roystering companions in the beer garden, when he finds he has reached the end of his resources. He is scarcely seated in a quiet corner when a ... See full summary »

Directors:

Paul Wegener, Stellan Rye (co-director)

Writers:

Hanns Heinz Ewers (story), Hanns Heinz Ewers (adaptation) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview:
Paul Wegener ... Balduin, a Student
Grete Berger Grete Berger ... Countess Margit von Schwarzenberg
Lyda Salmonova ... Lyduschka, a Gypsy Girl (as L. Salmonowa)
John Gottowt John Gottowt ... Scapinelli, an Old Sorcerer
Lothar Körner Lothar Körner ... Count von Schwarzenberg, Margit's Father
Fritz Weidemann Fritz Weidemann ... Baron Waldis-Schwarzenberg, Margit's Cousin, betrothed
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Storyline

Balduin, a student of Prague, leaves his roystering companions in the beer garden, when he finds he has reached the end of his resources. He is scarcely seated in a quiet corner when a hideous, shriveled-up old man taps him upon the shoulder and whispers vaguely of a big inheritance for Prague's finest swordsman and wildest student if he will enter into a certain agreement. Balduin rebuffs him, satirically asking his weird companion to procure him "the luckiest ticket in a lottery or a doweried wife." The old man goes off chuckling and thence onward persistently shadows Balduin, exerting a sinister influence over him, while Balduin is still disconsolate under the frowns of fortune. The Countess Margit Schwarzenberg, hunting with her cousin, to whom her father has betrothed her, meets with an accident. She is thrown over her horse's head into a river, but Balduin, who has been directed to the spot by his evil genius, plunges in and rescues her. Subsequently Balduin calls to inquire as ... Written by Moving Picture World synopsis

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Certificate:

Approved
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site [Germany]

Country:

Germany

Language:

German | English

Release Date:

September 1913 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Bargain with Satan See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Deutsche Bioscop GmbH See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(Alpha Video) | (restored) | (English Language Version)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

4:3
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Paul Wegener's film debut. See more »

Connections

Version of E O Craque Marcou (1997) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Grandfather of Horror Films
12 November 1998 | by Elliot-10See all my reviews

If "The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari" is the father of all horror films (and of German expressionist cinema), this pre-WWI film is the grandfather. The titular student, starving in an empty garret, makes a deal with the Devil-- the Devil gives him a bottomless sack of gold, in exchange for "anything in this room." The Devil chooses the student's reflection in his mirror. He walks off with the student's doppelganger, who commits crimes for which the student is blamed.

The film is marred by some limitations arising out of the technically primitive state of 1913 filmmaking; the plot cries out for chiaroschuro effects, but the film is, of necessity, virtually all shot in shadowless daylight. But the scene where the reflection walks out of the mirror still packs a wallop.

More interesting for the trends it fortells than for its own sake, The Student of Prague is still worthwhile.


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