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The Testament of Dr. Mabuse (1933) Poster

Trivia

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Banned by Nazi Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels in 1933 for its subversive nature and the possibility that it might "incite people to anti-social behavior and terrorism against the State".
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Fritz Lang, who was fluent in French, simultaneously shot a French-language version under the title "Le Testament du Docteur Mabuse." The German cast members who were not fluent in French were replaced with French-speaking actors. Rudolf Klein-Rogge had his dialog replaced with an early form of dubbing.
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The 2008 film The Dark Knight features a version of The Joker inspired by Mabuse. Throughout the film, the character recites monologues promoting chaos & disorder which borrow heavily from Mabuse's own in 1933's The Testament of Dr. Mabuse. Director Christopher Nolan has stated: "I think I made Jonah (Nolan's brother) watch Fritz Lang's Dr. Mabuse prior to writing the Joker.
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The film was banned in Germany, so the world premiere was held on April 21, 1933, in Budapest, Hungary, in its original 124-minute version.
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In his autobiography "Timebends," Arthur Miller speculates that his unconscious mind picked the name "Loman" for Willy Loman, the protagonist of what many consider his greatest play, "Death of a Salesman" (1947), from the name of Kriminalkomissar Lohmann in this film.
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The film was not shown to the German public until August 24, 1951, when it was presented in an edited 111-minute version.
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This film is part of the Criterion Collection, spine #231.
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As Fritz Lang made this film before the Nazis came to power, it might be considered as the first anti-Nazi propaganda film. As soon as they did come to power, the film was banned, and Lang felt it prudent to leave Germany very shortly afterwards.
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Spoilers 

The trivia item below may give away important plot points.

Like the Wizard of Oz, Dr. Mabuse leads unseen from behind a curtain. Ultimately, it is revealed that Dr. Baum is really the man leading the criminal organization (under Mabuse's spell). This appears to be an homage to the author of The Wizard of Oz books, L. Frank Baum.
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