The Blue Angel

1930, Movie, NR, 99 mins

Review

BLUE ANGEL, THE | DER BLAUE ENGEL
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The one and only; an unqualified masterpiece and milestone. Grim, ritualistic rise and fall of a respectable man at the hands of a heartless tramp is still one of the most horrifying studies of human degradation ever made. THE BLUE ANGEL's international success can be attributed to any number of elements: The immortal Jannings, UFA's greatest actor and a victim of the transition from silents to sound, is astounding in an essentially silent performance; Dietrich is wholly captivating in her first role with Sternberg--a creative union from which arose the Dietrich persona that would become internationally recognizable. It is, however, the genius of Sternberg to which THE BLUE ANGEL owes its greatness. His use of lighting, composition and of silence as sound, his overall creation of a world that can seduce and destroy even its most upstanding citizen, attest to this filmmaker's greatness and to the stature of THE BLUE ANGEL. Filmed simultaneously in German and English, the film is available in two, slightly differing, videotape versions--in German with English subtitles, and in English, the former preferable to the latter. leave a comment

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