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Der junge Medardus (1923)


Michael Curtiz (as Michael Kertész)


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Cast overview:
Anny Hornik Anny Hornik ... Agathe, seine Schwester
Mari Hegyesi Mari Hegyesi ... Frau Klähr, seine Mutter
Egon von Jordan ... Etzel
Mihail Xantho Mihail Xantho ... Napoleon
Mary Stone Mary Stone ... Anna
Franz Glawatsch Franz Glawatsch ... Berger
Gyula Szöreghy Gyula Szöreghy ... Eschenbacher
Josef König Josef König ... Wachshuber
Lajos Réthey Lajos Réthey ... Duke of Valois (as Ludwig Rethey)
Ágnes Eszterházy ... Helene (as Agnes Esterhazy)
Karel Lamac ... Franz (as Carl Lamac)
Ferdinand Onno Ferdinand Onno ... Marquis de Valois
Victor Varconi ... Medardus Klähr (as Michael Varkonyi)
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User Reviews

Curtiz Makes This Anhistorical Nonsense Look Good
13 August 2019 | by bobliptonSee all my reviews

This movie was originally released at length of 136 minutes. The version I looked at had 35 minutes trimmed, mostly, I judge, from the beginning, leaving some incoherence in the plot, derived from a Schnitzler play. It's 1809, Napoleon is at the gates of Vienna, and Medardus, played by Victor Varconi, is the son of a man dead in the wars. He is an Austrian patriot. He and Princess Ágnes Eszterházy are in love, but her ancien regime father orders her to marry the Valois claimant to the French throne. She does so, but puts him off until after he has accomplished a mission back in France. She sends for Varconi and tells him she loves him only, will he kill Napoleon -- played by a tubby Mihail Xantho -- pretty please and a cherry on top?

There's also an atlas that everyone is looking for, but I couldn't tell why. I don't think it matters terribly; the point of the movie is the costumes, the Viennese location shots, and the crowd scenes. Director Michael Curtiz is an absolute whiz at crowd sequences, whether they are battle scenes or the milling Viennese throngs. Perhaps those are actually the work of Second Unit director Arthur Gottlein, but I think not. Curtiz would, over the next couple of decades, run some pretty impressive crowd and battle sequences, in works like NOAH'S ARK and THE CHARGE OF THE LIGHT BRIGADE.

The historical drama is, of course, rather pointless, since Napoleon did not die in 1809 at the hands of an Austrian patriot, and the incoherence of the cut version only serves to abet the melodramatic nonsense of the story. Still, it remains an interesting movie for its position in Curtiz' curriculum vitae, demonstrating his assured visual settings even at this early stage of his career.

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Release Date:

5 October 1923 (Austria) See more »

Also Known As:

Young Medardus See more »

Filming Locations:

Lobau, Vienna, Austria See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Sascha-Film See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


| (reconstructed)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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