Tore takes over the rundown family farm. Applying his youthful energy, he intends to make it into a big farm like Glomgården on the other side of the river, where beautiful Berit lives. ... See full summary »
A young man is elected by a small village to be its parson. As part of his duties, he is required to marry the widow of the parson before him. This poses two problems--first, the widow is ... See full summary »
Based on the 1918 novel 'Elsker hverandre' by Aage Madelung, the film follows various lives, one of which is Jewish girl Hanne Liebe, as she grows up, and experiences the pains of living as a Jew in Russia, leading to a revolution.
Carl Theodor Dreyer
The judge in a Danish town sees his illegitimate daughter facing a trial for the murder of her newborn child, and is rather sure that she will be sentenced to death. She became pregnant ... See full summary »
Carl Theodor Dreyer
A man and a woman on a motorcycle arrive with a ferry to Assens. They want to catch the next ferry in Nyborg, on the other side of the island, but this ferry will leave in three quarters of... See full summary »
Documentary without words but with an impressive orchestral soundtrack that captures the magnificence of the Storstrøm bridge, an engineering work that connects the Danish islands of ... See full summary »
Mikaël is an artist who rises as his teacher, the aging Zoret, falls. Zoret gives Mikaël his start, and their relationship is sexual as well. Then Mikaël takes up with the Princess Zamikoff, selling gifts from Zoret and even stealing from the master to pay for his carnal and luxurious life with her. He abandons Zoret, whose health begins to fail but who also discovers spirituality in his solitude. In a subplot, Alice Adelsskjold cuckolds her husband and takes a lover, the Duke of Monthieu; their relationship, infused with the eroticism of art, also gives way to religion as the duke becomes ill.Written by
A famous painter named Claude Zoret (Benjamin Christensen) falls in love with one of his models, Michael (Walter Slezak), and for a time the two live happily as partners. Zoret is considerably older than Michael, and as they age, Michael begins to drift from him, although Zoret is completely blind to this.
Directed by the great Danish director Carl Theodor Dreyer, who went on to direct "The Passion of Joan of Arc", called by some "the most influential film of all time". Written by Dreyer, and Thea von Harbou, who is now probably best known as Fritz Lang's wife. Produced by Erich Pommer, which cinematography by Karl Freund. As far as 1920s German cinema goes, this is top drawer.
Along with "Different From the Others" (1919) and "Sex in Chains" (1928), "Michael" is widely considered a landmark in gay silent cinema. It has also been suggested that the film reflects personal feelings harbored by Dreyer after a purported homosexual affair, though I have no evidence of that.
This film was pretty great, despite being silent and foreign. Those factors took nothing away from the experience for me, and I have to give credit to Dreyer and the cast -- the film is full of very intense faces, which made up for the lack of any audible emotion.
What drew me to this film was having cameraman Karl Freund on camera. A genius behind it, this is a rare treat to see the man in front and caught on film. His role is fairly small, but captures his movements and body language in a way that no photograph ever could. To my knowledge, this was his last acting role in a film.
The film has been cited to have influenced several directors. Alfred Hitchcock drew upon motifs from "Michael" for his script for "The Blackguard" (1925).
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