The first film in my 2019 TCM Essentials movie watching project is the 1927 silent science fiction epic Metropolis. And what a film it is.
Made in Germany and directed by Fritz Lang, this remarkable and influential film is set in a segregated, dystopian future–one where wealthy citizens live a life of luxury above ground in an ultra-modern city and where a large group of hidden enslaved workers live underground to keep everything running. When one of the city’s rich kids learns about the plight of the underground workers, he and a woman from the underground plot a rebellion. However, the rich kid’s father and his employed evil scientist have something else in mind…
The film is revered for its themes, art direction, and special effects–all of which are stunning. There have been multiple cuts of the film. I watched the 2010 version that I rented on Apple iTunes which includes 25 extra minutes of footage that was found in 2008 and considered by film scholars to be one of “the most important film discoveries in history” according to The Essentials author Jeremy Arnold.
Here’s a trailer for the 2010 restored version.
And here’s a cool poster for the film, too.
Metropolis is definitely worthy of its reputation—a monumental and astounding film that stands the test of time.
My score: 5 out of 5 stars
Images ©️ Kino International, Ufa