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Fantasy in German Expressionism

by Kate Fortmueller

The Golem was released the same year as The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, but reflects different elements of German Expressionism. The Golem is a fantasy film (as clearly indicated by this sequence of conjuring and bringing a clay man to life). However, the sets, canted angles, and lighting also demonstrate its formal affinities to German Expressionist filmmaking. Consider the sets in the lab in the opening of this clip in relation to some of the interiors from The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari.

The Golem - Bringing the Golem to life (1920)

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In this sequence Rabbi Loew conjures the word that will bring the Golem to life.

from The Golem (1920)
Creator: Paul Wegener and Carl Boese
Distributor: Kino Video
Posted by Kate Fortmueller