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Dr. Mabuse, the Gambler: the Great Gambler, a Picture of Our Time (Part 1)
(Dr. Mabuse, der Spieler: 1. Teil: Der große Spieler - ein Bild unserer Zeit)

DR. MABUSE, THE GAMBLER, a two-part (THE GREAT GAMBLER, A PICTURE OF OUR TIME and INFERNO, MEN OF OUR TIME) silent crime thriller, is one of the great epics of German silent cinema. The shimmering decadence of Weimar Germany masked the uncertainty about whether and how the authoritarian past of the nation would reassert itself. In deftly combining fiction together with a realistic view of the chaotic situation in Germany at the time Lang’s work is a masterpiece in its genre.
The film had an enormous influence on film history. The calculating criminal genius was reflected in the figures of super-villains from the James Bond films up to contemporary brilliant masterminds like Hannibal Lecter.

Dr. Mabuse, the "man with 1000 faces", is a sinister criminal. He uses his enormous hypnotic powers and extraordinary ability to continuously change his identity and gain power over his victims. He manipulates the stock market, prints counterfeit money and toys with the weaknesses of the rich and influential. In illegal casinos, he hypnotizes his opponents, thus causing them to lose all their money to him. He even uses the seductive powers of the beautiful dancer Cara Carozza to get to a wealthy, young American. However, Mabuse's clever plan is disrupted by the plodding and methodical detective von Wenk, who seems to be able to resist Mabuse's evil powers. Then Mabuse plots to murder von Wenk and manages to knock him out and throw his body into a lake. However, before it is too late, von Wenk is saved. In the meantime, Mabuse goes to a party hosted by Countess Told, who has asked von Wenk for his support. Mabuse hypnotizes Count Told and entices him to gamble. Suddenly, the Countess faints and Dr. Mabuse kidnaps her as his new victim.


Michael Obst

0 new score
  small orchestra (16 - 45 Musicians)    
1+1/altofl.1+ca.2+basscl.1 – – 3perc.2pno.hrp – strings (