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Mephisto (1981)

Unrated | | Drama | 22 March 1982 (USA)
A German stage actor finds unexpected success and mixed blessings in the popularity of his performance in a Faustian play as the Nazis take power in pre-WWII Germany. As his associates and ... See full summary »

Director:

István Szabó

Writers:

Péter Dobai (screenplay), István Szabó (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 13 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Klaus Maria Brandauer ... Hendrik Höfgen
Krystyna Janda ... Barbara Bruckner
Ildikó Bánsági Ildikó Bánsági ... Nicoletta von Niebuhr
Rolf Hoppe ... Tábornagy
György Cserhalmi ... Hans Miklas
Péter Andorai Péter Andorai ... Otto Ulrichs
Karin Boyd Karin Boyd ... Juliette Martens
Christine Harbort Christine Harbort ... Lotte Lindenthal
Tamás Major ... Oskar Kroge, színigazgató
Ildikó Kishonti Ildikó Kishonti ... Dora Martin, primadonna
Mária Bisztrai Mária Bisztrai ... Motzné, tragika
Sándor Lukács Sándor Lukács ... Rolf Bonetti, bonviván
Ágnes Bánfalvy Ágnes Bánfalvy ... Angelika Siebert, naiva (as Bánfalvi Ágnes)
Judit Hernádi Judit Hernádi ... Rachel Mohrenwitz, drámai szende
Vilmos Kun Vilmos Kun ... Ügyelõ
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Storyline

A German stage actor finds unexpected success and mixed blessings in the popularity of his performance in a Faustian play as the Nazis take power in pre-WWII Germany. As his associates and friends flee or are ground under by the Nazi terror, the popularity of his character supercedes his own existence until he finds that his best performance is keeping up appearances for his Nazi patrons. Written by Keith Loh <loh@sfu.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Language:

Hungarian | German | English

Release Date:

22 March 1982 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Mefisto See more »

Filming Locations:

Germany See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

István Szabó: A guest wearing a tuxedo on the theater reception party near the end of the film, complaining about the unnecessary expenses of the luxurious party. See more »

Goofs

As Hoefgen crosses a street, a car passes in front of him. The crew is reflected in the car's window. See more »

Quotes

Hendrik Hoefgen: Am I not the most dreadful villain you have seen?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Last Horror Film (1982) See more »

Soundtracks

Gräfin Dubarry
Music by Karl Millöcker (as Millöcker)
Sung by Magda Kalmár
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Klaus Maria Brandauer is magnificent
8 October 2006 | by faraaj-1See all my reviews

Klaus Maria Brandauer, the celebrated German stage actor, is not really a big fan of cinema. Largely unknown to cinematic audiences, he made a big splash with his debut Mephisto.

Mephisto is the ancient legend of the man who sells his soul to the devil in return for worldly gains - as told by Faust. Klaus plays a Hamburg stage actor famous for his portrayal of Mephisto on stage. Flirting with socialism, he embraces the leadership of the Nazi party in order to move to Berlin and rise in the theatre hierarchy. He does rise and continues to ingratiate himself with the Nazi Generals and Prime Minister and rises to the very top where his full oratorical abilities can be displayed. He also shows a complete lack of self respect or conviction for anything but his personal worldly success and power - which he does use on occasion to save less favoured colleagues.

Klaus has given a remarkable performance in this film - all physicality. Throughout much of the movie he is poker faced and relies on his hands and his body to express himself fully. Its a very unique, one-of-a-kind performance that makes this film so watchable. The narrative itself is chopped and may sub-plots are introduced then cut short.


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