I recently picked up a copy of the 1931 Fritz Lang film, M. Without giving too much away, it features a young Peter Lorre as a serial killer who terrorizes a German town when he begins murdering small children. (That's not a spoiler, by the by, his identity as the killer is revealed to the audience very early in the picture.) The suspense in the picture derives from the massive manhunt as the police desperately try to uncover and capture him. The police crackdown disrupts the criminal element so much that the local syndicate launches their own hunt for the killer, and Lang makes good use of showing the comparison and contrast between the "legitimate" and "illegitimate" segments of society. This was apparently, Lang's first sound picture, but you'd never've known it, he uses sound very well.
Lorre is unbelievable in this picture. It occurred to me me while watching that I've more imitations of Lorre, than I have films with him in them. But this picture by itself would establish him as a top-level actor. You really believe in Lorre's character as someone capable of doing unspeakable things. There's next to know overt violence in the picture, but Lang uses suggestion so well that you shudder watching this film. The cover copy describes this picture as the seminal psychological thriller movie, and I can believe it.
The picture is in German with subtitles - I mention that only because I know a number of people that can deal with subtitles.
Also, there's at least three guys in this picture who sort of vaguely remind me of Kenneth MacDonald, the guy who was always playing the Three Stooges' crooked lawyer. Must've been a common look back then - I keep waiting for someone to say, "The estate of Uncle Ambrose Rose - and we thank you."
Anyway, I heartily recommend this picture - both as an "historical document", and as a very interesting movie to watch.
I watched Serpico last night. Not a particularly exciting movie. But a good one nonetheless. A great performance by Pacino.
Jason Marconnet (Lime_Coke) said:I watched Serpico last night. Not a particularly exciting movie. But a good one nonetheless. A great performance by Pacino.
Not an exciting movie? I fell asleep the first two times I tried watching it.
I recently picked up a copy of the 1931 Fritz Lang film, M.... Anyway, I heartily recommend this picture - both as an "historical document", and as a very interesting movie to watch.