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Fritz  Lang
[Friedrich Christian Anton Lang - 1890-1976]

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Fritz Lang films in Germany
Fritz Lang films in America
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other works by Fritz Lang

works about Fritz Lang


         director Fritz Lang [1890-1976]

"I should say that I was a visual person. I experience with my eyes
and never, or rarely, with my ears . . . to my constant regret."
— Fritz Lang

"There is no blacklist, but you are on it." — Fritz Lang's agent

         Friedrich Christian Anton Lang was born 5 December 1890 in Vienna, Austria, After high school, he trained as a painter and traveled across Europe & North Africa & Asia. He was drafted into the Austrian army at the start of World War I, and was severely wounded in June 1916. During his convalescence, he began to write scripts for Germany's new film industry. After writing scenarios for nine silent films [1916-1919], he directed "Die Spinnen (The Spiders)" [1920], a huge commercial success. He married Lisa Rosenthal in 1919, who committed suicide in 1921; that same year he married Thea von Harbou, his scriptwriter on subsequent German films. The films that he made in Germany are highly-stylized, superb examples of dramatic mysticism and visual expressionism. His first sound film, "M" [1931], set high standards for the sound film, through his montages of sound and image.

         Lang and von Harbou divorced in 1933, the same year that he fled Germany because of the rise of the Nazis. The story that Josef Goebbels offered him the position of director of the German Cinema Institute (later given to filmmaker Leni Riefenstahl) and that Lang fled Germany the same night is only partially verified. He spent about a year in Paris – making one film, "Liliom" [1936] – before further flight to the United States.

         Lang arrived in Hollywood in June 1934. He brought his expressionist vision to then-popular film noir, and also made anti-Nazi movies, but he was not under contract and his long-standing reputation for being difficult to work with made it increasingly tough to get work with the studios, and being on the secret but very real Hollywood Blacklist did not help. But he persevered, and made 23 films in 21 years, often by producing them himself. At the end of the 1950s, he traveled to Germany and made what turned out to be his final three films there.

         By 1960, he was nearly blind. He lived in retiremnt in Beverly Hills, and wrote scripts and story ideas (never produced), and received honors and attention for his career from Cahiers du Cinema in France, from Jean-Luc Godard (a role as himself in "Contempt" [1963]), from the Cannes Festival (jury president in 1964), and from biographer Peter Bogdanovich (1969). Lang married Lily Latte, his longtime companion {from about 1931) in 1971.
         Fritz Lang died 2 August 1976 at age 85 in Beverly Hills, California after having directed 19 films in Germany, one in France, and 23 features in Hollywood.

Fritz Lang received:
International Critics Special Mention Award at the 1946 Venice Film Festival for "Hangmen Also Die!" [1943]
star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame  a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1960 (at 1600 Vine Street)
Honorary Award at the German Film Awards in 1963
Life Career Award at the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films in 1976

Fritz Lang entry at Wikipedia
Fritz Lang credits [1916-60] at Internet Movie Database
browse Fritz Lang on DVD at Amazon

Fritz Lang Epic Collection DVD box set  "Fritz Lang Epic Collection" DVD box set [2004]
Kino Video b&w DVD set [11/2004] 5 disks orig $89.99 - out of prodn/used
DVD set contains "Die Nibelungen: Siegfried" [1924]; "Die Nibelungen: Die Kriemhilds Rache" [1924]; "Metropolis" [1927 silent masterpiece]; "Spies" [1928]; "Woman In The Moon" [1929]; plus the 43-minute documentary "Metropolis Case" [undated] featuring film historian Enno Patalas, and other extras
Fritz Lang Early Works DVD box set  "Fritz Lang: The Early Works" DVD Box Set [2012]
Kino Intl. b&w DVD set [11/2012] 3 disks for $35.93
contains 3 authorized & restored b&w silent feature films: "Harakiri" [1919], "The Wandering Image/Shadow (Das Wandernde Bild)" [1920], and "Four Around The Woman (Vier um die Frau)" [1921]

Fritz  Lang's  Films  in  Germany

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"Die Peitsche" [1916] (writer)

"Die Hochzeit im Excentricclub"
aka "Wedding In The Eccentric Club" [1917] (writer)

"Hilde Warren und der Tod" [1917] (writer)

"Wolkenblau und Flimmerstern" [1919] (writer)

"Totentanz" aka "Dance of Death" [1919] (writer)

"Die Rache ist Mein" [1919] (writer)

"Die Pest in Florenz"
aka "The Plague In Florence" [1919] (writer)

"Lilith und Ly" [1919] (writer)

"Die Frau mit den Orchideen" [1919] (writer)

"The Half-Caste" aka "Halbblut" [1919]

"Master of Love"" aka "Der Herr der Liebe" [1919]

"Spiders, Part 1: The Golden Lake"
aka "Die Spinnen, Erste Teil: Der Goldene See" [1919]

"Harakiri (Madame Butterfly)" [1919]

"Spiders, Part 2: The Diamond Ship"
aka "Die Spinnen, Zweite Teil: Das Brillantenschiff" [1920]

"The Wandering Image" aka "Das Wandernde Bild" [1920]

"Four Around A Woman" aka "Vier um die Frau" [1921]

"Destiny" aka "Der Müde Tod" {'The Weary Death') [1921]

"Dr. Mabuse The Gambler" aka "Dr. Mabuse der Spieler" [1922]

"Die  Nibelungen:  Siegfried" [U.F.A. Feb 1924]
Co-written & directed by Fritz Lang; co-written by Thea von Harbou; full credits from IMDb

Ayn Rand: " close to a great work of art as the films have yet come" [1969]

"Die Nibelungen: Kriemhild's Revenge" [U.F.A. April 1924]
Directed by Fritz Lang; written by Thea von Harbou; full credits from IMDb

Wagner, Lang & the Nibelungen  
"Richard Wagner, Fritz Lang, and The Nibelungen: The Dramaturgy of Disavowal" [1998] by David J. Levin
Princeton Univ Press 9¼x6 pb [11/99] for $24.95
Princeton Univ Press 9½x6¼ hardcover [1/98] out of print/used

"Metropolis"  [U.F.A./Paramount Jan 1927 silent]
A work of genius, a wondrous & sensational experience, and so costly that the film bankrupted U.F.A., the national
film studio of Weimar Germany
• Directed by Fritz Lang; listed on Time Magazine's All-TIME 100 Movies (5/2005)

more details (synopsis, books, posters, DVDs & videos) on
Magic Lantern's "Metropolis" 1927 Movie Page

"Spione" (Spies) [1928]

"Woman In The Moon (Frau im Mund)" silent feature [U.F.A. Germany Oct 1929]
USA title "By Rocket To The Moon" [U.F.A. Film USA Feb 1931]
Frau im Mund / Woman In The Moon poster  Film runs almost 3 hours; thirty years after Prof. Manfeldt proposed a mission to the Moon to exploit its gold deposits, Herr Helius is ready to launch the rocket Friede, but the bankers financing the mission insist on having a representative on board, and after takeoff they discover a boy stowaway . . .; excellent science and excellent SFX for the time. • Produced, adapted & directed by Fritz Lang, based on a novel by {his wife} Thea von Harbou; technical advisor Hermann Oberth; SFX by Oskar Fischinger & Konstantin Irmen-Tschet; starring Klaus Pohl, Willy Fritsch, Gustav von Wangenheim, Gerda Maurus, Gustl Gstettenbaur, Fritz Rasp, Tilla Durieux, Hermann Vallentin, Max Zilzer, Mahmud Terja Bey, Borwin Walth, Karl Platen, Margarete Kupfer, Alexa von Porembsky, Gerhard Dammann, Heinrich Gotho, Alfred Loretto, Max Maximilian, Edgar Pauly & Josephine the Mouse
Kino Lorber German w/English subtitles b&w Blu-ray [2/2016] for $19.99
Kino Lorber German w/English subtitles b&w DVD [2/2016] for $16.61
Kino Lorber German w/English subtitles b&w DVD [11/2004] for $19.99
full credits at IMDbmovie entry at Wikipedia
watch original trailer, with modern music by IOCOI [5/2012 upload; 2:20] online at YouTube
watch full movie [11/2016 upload; 2:49:48] online at YouTube
'The Rocket To The Moon' novel by Thea von Harbou  
"By Rocket To The Moon" [1930 novel] by Thea von Harbou
Literary Licensing 9x6 pb [10/2011] for $27.95
Literary Licensing 9x6 hardcover [7/2011] for $42.95
World Wide Publng Co. hardcover [1930] long out of print/scarce

Fritz Lang's "M" [1931]
1951 remake by Joseph Losey

"The Testament of Dr. Mabuse" in German [1933]
"The Last Will of Dr. Mabuse" in French [1933]

"Liliom" [France 1934]

Fritz  Lang's  Films  in  America

·            ·

"Fury" [1936] Fritz Lang's best film noir

"You Only Live Once" [1937]

"You and Me" [1938 musical comedy]

"The Return of Frank James" [1940]

"Western Union"  [Fox 1941]
Western Union 1941 movie poster  Directed by Fritz Lang; based on the 1939 novel by Zane Grey; starring Robert Young, Randolph Scott, Dean Jagger, Virginia Gilmore, John Carradine, Slim Summerville, Chill Wills, Barton MacLane, Russell Hicks, Victor Kilian, Minor Watson, George Chandler, Chief John Big Tree, Chief Thundercloud & Dick Rich
Fox Video color VHS [11/89] for $39.98
full credits from IMDb
11"x17" poster from Amazon for $9.99

"Man Hunt" [1941]

"Moontide" [1942] (uncredited)

"Hangmen Also Die" [1943]

"Ministry of Fear"  [Paramount Oct 1944]
Fritz Lang's Ministry of Fear video  Released into wartime London after two years in a mental hospital, an American stumbles into a spy ring and has no one to turn to. Produced & adapted by Seton I. Miller; directed by Fritz Lang; based on the 1943 novel by Graham Greene; starring Ray Milland, Marjorie Reynolds, Carl Esmond, Hillary Brooke, Percy Waram, Dan Duryea, Alan Napier & Erskine Sanford
b&w DVD [date unknown] out of prodn/used
Universal b&w VHS [4/98] out of prodn/used
full credits from IMDb

"The Woman In The Window" [1944]

"Scarlet Street"  [Universal Dec 1945]
Fritz Lang's Scarlet Street poster   A cashier rescues a dame from her abusive boyfriend; smitten, he tells her that he is a wealthy artist and sets her up in an apartment (using his shrewish wife's money), where he creates inspired paintings. The boyfriend sells the paintings under the girl's name, with terrible consequences. Directed by Fritz Lang; based on the film "La Chienne" [France 1931] by Jean Renoir; starring Edward G. Robinson, Joan Bennett, Dan Duryea, Margaret Lindsay, Jess Barker & Rosalind Ivan
Kino Video b&w DVD [11/2005] for $21.99
Alpha Video b&w DVD [2/2002] for $7.98
Timeless Multimedia b&w VHS [12/91] for $9.99
full credits from IMDb

"Cloak and Dagger" [1946]

"Secret Beyond The Door" [1948]

"House By The River" [1950]

"American Guerrilla In The Philippines" [1950]

"Rancho Notorious" [1952]

"Clash By Night"
[R.K.O. Radio Pictures June 1952]
Clash By Night 1952 movie starring Barbara Stanwyck  A bitter & cynical woman returns from New York City to her small coastal hometown. She agrees to marry, has a baby, and becomes bored; when the wife of her brother's best friend leaves him, the two unhappy people begin an affair. Directed by Fritz Lang; adapted by Alfred Hayes from the 1941 play by Clifford Odets; starring Barbara Stanwyck, Robert Ryan, Paul Douglas, Marilyn Monroe, J. Carrol Naish, Keith Andes & Silvio Minciotti
Turner Home Ent. b&w DVD [7/2005] for $17.99
Turner Home Ent. b&w VHS [8/96] out of prodn/many used
full credits at IMDb

"The Blue Gardenia" [1953]

"The Big Heat"  [Columbia Oct 1953]
The Big Heat movie  A police detective's routine investigation of a cop's suicide takes a turn when a B-girl offering evidence is found murdered. He puts pressure on the local rackets boss, which causes the bombing death of the cop's wife, leading to white-hot vengeance. Directed by Fritz Lang; starring Glenn Ford, Gloria Grahame, Jocelyn Brando, Alexander Scourby, Lee Marvin, Jeanette Nolan, Peter Whitney, Carolyn Jones & John Doucette
Sony b&w DVD [12/2001] for $21.99
Sony b&w VHS [5/2000] out of prodn/used
full credits from IMDb

"The Big Heat" by Colin McArthur & Fritz Lang ISBN-13: 9780851703428

"Human Desire" [Columbia Aug 1954]
Based on the novel by Emile Zola; directed by Fritz Lang; starring Glenn Ford, Gloria Grahame,
Broderick Crawford & Edgar Buchanan; full credits at IMDb

"Moonfleet" [1955 costume drama]

"While The City Sleeps" [1956]

"Beyond A Reasonable Doubt" [1957]

Back  To  Germany

·            ·

"The Tiger of Eschnapur" [1959]

"Das Indische Grabmal"
aka "The Indian Tomb, or Journey To The Lost City" [1959]

"The Thousand Eyes of Dr. Mabuse"
aka "Die 1000 Augen des Dr. Mabuse" [1960]

Other  Works  by  Fritz  Lang

"Le Mépris" { 'Contempt' }
[France Dec 1963, USA Oct 1964]
Contempt / Le Mépris movie   Godard's view of commercial Hollywood filmmaking and human relationships is mischievous, rebellious, subversive & contemptuous. A respected Italian screenwriter of an innovative production of "Homer's Odyssey" struggles to please the American producer, the German director (Fritz Lang - at age 72), and the writer's unhappy sexpot French wife. {Godard's first color film.} Adapted & directed by Jean-Luc Godard, from the 1954 novel "Il Disprezzo" by Alberto Moravia; cinematography in Franscope by Raoul Coutard; starring Michel Piccoli, Jack Palance, Brigitte Bardot, Giorgia Moll & Fritz Lang, with cameos by Jean-Luc Godard & Raoul Coutard
LionsGate widescreen color Blu-ray [2/2010] for $25.99
Criterion widescreen color DVD [12/2002] 2 disks for $30.49
The DVD set includes "The Dinosaur and The Baby" TV documentary [61 minutes 1967], a conversation between Jean-Luc Godard and Fritz Lang; two short on-set interviews with Godard; plus other extras
Embassy/Nelson Ent. color VHS [3/91] out of prodn/used
full credits at IMDbRialto movie sitemovie entry at Wikipedia
Contempt / Il Disprezzo novel  
"Contempt" [1954]
by Alberto Moravia, translated by Angus Davidson

New York Review of Books 7¾x4¾ pb [7/2004] for $10.17
New York Review of Books 8x5 pb [9/99] out of print/used

"The Dinosaur and The Baby" TV documentary [1967]
61 minute-conversation between Jean-Luc Godard and Fritz Lang, directed by André S. Labarthe
credits at IMDb

"Conversation With Fritz Lang" documentary [Feb 1975]
140-minute b&w docufilm directed by interviewer William Friedkin, cinematography by William A. Fraker
credits at IMDbwatch excerpts [49:29] online at Internet Archive

"Fritz Lang: Interviews" [Univ Press of Mississippi 10/2003] Edited by Barry Keith Grant

Works  About  Fritz  Lang

"Begegnung mit Fritz Lang" [1963]

"Fritz Lang In America" by Peter Bogdanovich [Praeger, 1967]

"Zum Beispiel: Fritz Lang" [1968]

"The Cinema of Fritz Lang" [A.S. Barnes & Co. [1969]
by Paul M. Jensen

"Die Schweren Träume des Fritz Lang" [1974 TV]

"Fritz Lang: The Image and The Look"
[British Film Institute, 1981] Edited by Stephen Jenkins

"Fritz Lang" [Da Capo Press 1988?] by Lottie Eisner

"Fritz Lang: The Nature of The Beast" [St. Martin's, 1997] by Patrick McGilligan

Fritz Lang Circle of Destiny docu film   "Fritz Lang: Circle of Destiny" aka "Fritz Lang, Le Cercle du Destin - Les Films Allemands" [2000 TV]
54-minute documentary film directed by Jorge Dana
Image Ent. color/b&w DVD [8/2001] for $17.99
full credits from IMDb
French-language 'Le Film Noir' book by Patrick Brion  "Le Film Noir: L'Áge d'Or du Film Criminel Américain" [2004] by Patrick Brion
Subjects include Howard Hawks, Alfred Hitchcock, Fritz Lang, Stanley Kubrick, Nicholas Ray & Orson Welles
Editions de la Martinière French-language hardcover [9/2004] for €42,75 at Amazon France
Patrick Brion's weblog (in French)
Art by Film Directors book by Karl French  "Art By Film Directors" [2004] by Karl French
includes chapters on Charlie Chaplin, Jean Cocteau, Sergei Eisenstein, Federico Fellini, Terry Gilliam, Peter Greenaway, Alfred Hitchcock, Dennis Hopper, John Huston, Takeshi Kitano, Stanley Kubrick, Akira Kurosawa, Fritz Lang, Alan Parker, Gordon Parks, Satyajit Ray, Martin Scorsese, Josef von Sternberg, Wim Wenders, and others
Mitchell Beazley 11½x9½ hardcover [11/2004] for $30.40
Great Moviemakers of Hollywood's Golden Age  "Conversations With The Great Moviemakers of Hollywood's Golden Age: At The American Film Institute" [2006] by George Stevens, Jr.
interviews with 32 major writers, directors & cinematographers, including Ingmar Bergman, writer Ray Bradbury, Richard Brooks, Frank Capra, William Clothier, Stanley Cortez, George Cukor, Federico Fellini, George Folsey, Howard Hawks, Alfred Hitchcock, James Wong Howe, John Huston, Elia Kazan, Gene Kelly, Stanley Kramer, Fritz Lang, David Lean, Ernest Lehman, Mervyn LeRoy, Harold Lloyd, Rouben Mamoulian, Satyajit Ray, Jean Renoir, George Stevens, King Vidor, Hal Wallis, Raoul Walsh, Billy Wilder, Robert Wise, William Wyler & Fred Zinnemann
Knopf 9½x6½ hardcover [2/2006] for $23.10

Divided World / Hollywood & Emigre Directors book by Nick Smedley  "A Divided World: Hollywood Cinema and Emigre Directors In The Era of Roosevelt and Hitler, 1933-1948" [2011] by Nick Smedley
Examines some of the important programs of the New Deal and the subsequent response of the film community, and also compares and contrasts the major works of three European directors – Fritz Lang, Ernst Lubitsch & Billy Wilder – with the products of mainstream Hollywood.
Intellect Ltd 9x6¾ pb [2/2011] for $40.00 = listmania

"The Films of Fritz Lang: Allegories of Vision & Modernity"
[British Film Institute, 2000] by Tom Gunning 0851707432

book about Lang's "Dr Mabuse" [5/2001] by David Kalat

"Fritz Lang: His Life and Work - Photographs & Documents" [2001]
by Nicole Brunnhuber, Gabriele Jatho, Rolf Aurich, and Wolfgang Jacobsen 3931321746

"Fritz Lang: Genre and Representation In His American Films" [2003?]
by Reynold Humphries

L i n k s
Fritz Lang entry at Wikipedia
Fritz Lang credits [1916-60] at Internet Movie Database
browse Fritz Lang on DVD at Amazon
browse books by/about Fritz Lang

Fritz Lang Collection at U.S.C.
Magic Lantern's Hollywood Blacklist Pages
Fritz Lang entry at Senses of Cinema

here on the Fritz Lang [1890-1976] Page at Magic Lantern Video & Book Store

top of pageshort profilefilm collectionsFritz Lang films in GermanyFritz Lang films in America

back to Germanyother works by Fritz Langworks about Fritz Langlinks

Magic Lantern's "Metropolis" 1927 Movie Page

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