NOSFERATU (Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau, 1921)

In the context of silent German cinema, F. W. Murnau’s Nosferatu looms, perhaps, a bit larger than is fitting. The film cannot compare to Fritz Lang’s masterpiece Destiny the same year, or the two parts of Lang’s Die Nibelungen (1924), or to G. W. Pabst’s The Joyless Street (1925). Even Murnau, most agree, is better […]

DIARY OF A LOST GIRL (G. W. Pabst, 1929)

Dubious soap opera launches Georg Wilhelm Pabst’s last silent film, which is full of blatant moralism. Much of Tagebuch einer Verlorenen, moreover, is close to being lurid.      A governess, impregnated by Thymiane Henning’s father, a bourgeois pharmacist, is tossed out; she is later found drowned. When Thymiane is raped and impregnated by her father’s assistant […]