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In a world struggling against pestilence, famine, and disease Mephisto decides he can attempt a hostile take-over through a real estate deal. The Archangel Michael agrees, that if Mephisto can win Faust over to his side, he gets the kit and kaboodle. Faust is a tired old doctor/alchemist who is disappointed at his inability to offer healing to those with the rampant-running plague. Soon, he calls on Mephisto and strikes up a deal with him. Mephisto gives him youth and pleasures of the world, until Faust falls for a simple girl.
This film is brilliantly done, with fantastic effects and brilliant storytelling. Some scenes are downright eerie, like Mephisto standing over the town with ravens wings. Emil Jennings plays a brilliant Mephisto, somewhere between the brilliant humor of mythical Loki and the dark evil vision of Zarathrustra's Angra Mainyu. Gösta Ekman is brilliant as Faust as well, from withered old man to young libertine, he shows talent rarely seen on the screen in recent time.
Though there aren't a lot of features on this disc, (including a nice photo gallery, a link to Kino's website, and scene selection), the print is beautiful for its age, and the music recently recorded and very appropriate. The price is a little high, but your not purchasing a sad copy for a few bucks, but a masterpiece both in original content and painstaking preservation. This film is worthy of being in any collection interest in great filmmaking.
"Faust" features a stylish dream-like atmosphere punctuated with stunning special effects and lush visuals. Of course, this will not be to everyone's taste. Those looking for realistic straightforward storytelling may find it tedious or silly. I would say that "Faust" will appeal to fans of surreal "cult" films, ones that create their own unique allegorical world, such as "Brazil," "Dark City," "The City of Lost Children," "Being John Malkovich," "Metropolis," and the films of Jean Cocteau. In fact, the general atmosphere of Faust is most similar to Cocteau's "Beauty and the Beast" -- the young version of Faust reminds me of the Prince the Beast becomes. On a slightly lighter note, "Faust" should also appeal to fans of cult television shows like "The Avengers," "The Prisoner," and "Twin Peaks." I would even expect it to appeal to fans of classic Disney animation.
For a silent film of its day, the picture quality on "Faust" is very good. There is some slight unrepaired damage early on, but the picture quality becomes increasingly pristine as the film progresses.Read more ›
You all know Faust - that fellow who made a deal with the devil. The story goes back as far as the fifteenth century, with Johann Wolfgang von Goethe penning the definitive version in the early nineteenth century. Murnau's Faust differs somewhat from the original two-part drama written by Goethe, supplanting rationalism with mysticism (no one did mysticism better than early German filmmakers). This approach, among other things, allows Murnau to open the film with nothing less than jaw-dropping visuals and effects. The story is heralded by the grim image of the apocalyptic horsemen thundering through the clouds, leading us to a confrontation between Mephisto (Satan) and an archangel over the control of the Earth. A wager is proposed, with dominion over the Earth set to depend upon the fate of one man's soul. That man is, of course, Faust, a good man targeted for evil temptation by the cursed one. Knowing he could not tempt Faust directly, Mephisto uses his own compassion against him.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I thought that the film was a masterpiece, even though it was very different from the opera, which I actually prefer.Published 3 months ago by Gabrielle Bronzich
A masterpiece beyond description.
Every shot is an incredible work of art.
Great movie. Not quite as good as Munrau's "Sunrise," (definitely a five-star choice). The special effects are great, so is the scenery. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Amazon Customer
I'm not giving one star to the film as I've yet to watch it properly. The Desert Island Classic copy if this film is a joke. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Connor Armenti
This movie was great, it had comedy, tragedy and love. I'm beginning to become a fan of silent movies after watching Nosferatu, and Faust was an excellent follow-up to it,... Read morePublished 5 months ago by Christopher
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