Monday, 14 November 2011

Metropolis Review

Fig. 1 Metropolis poster
A film made way back in 1927, has had recent restorations of the lost original footage. Metropolis has received a magnitude of editing, with recent releases changing the frame rate from 16 - 20 to 25, making the body movement appear unnaturally quick which may not have been Fritz Lang's, the director, intention. 

Excluding the darkness and silence that is presented, this is a bland film. Whilst it has it's moments of redemption with it's impressive scenery, the story fails to captivate. With so many events taking place, and with little to no explanation or clue as to what is happening, Metropolis places you into a labyrinth of confusion. There are two pauses within the film, excluding the end, in which it states the prologue and middle story section. Such pauses, question whether they should be labelled or even exist at all.The prologue takes the bulk of the film, which drops story as a priority from that point on and places visual effects as a key element. 

Fig. 2 Machine-man's transformation
The futuristic mega-city is designed and crafted extremely well, making it evident that Metropolis inspired the likes of Minority Report and Blade Runner. Such influence is also in the character design of Lucas' C3-P0 from Star Wars. Inspiration that originated from the Machine-man. Lang has created an exceptional view of  Metropolis, with a "shockingly prophetic view of armies of downtrodden workers, all clad in the same baggy uniform, their capped heads bent, shuffling in perfect choreography as they descend to the depths of their workaday hell" (Gadette, 2010) standing as the most iconic moment of the film.

Fig. 3 Metropolis up in lights
Making up in visuals for where it lacks in story, Metropolis has stood against time and still inspires many modern films. With a handful of memorable moments, due to stunning visuals, Metropolis is pleasing on the eye, but lacks to capture any interest in the romance and story. The theme of the film, "has come to be accepted and embraced even by Lang, who long considered Metropolis a huge blemish on his career" (Cabin, 2010).

Illustration list
Figure 1. Fritz Lang (1927) Metropolis poster. At:
Figure 2. Fritz Lang (1927) Machine-man's transformation. At:
Figure 3. Fritz Lang (1927) Metropolis up in lights. At:

Bibliography list
Kimberly Gadette (2010) Indie Movies Online. At:
Chris Cabin (2010) Slant Magazine. At:

1 comment:

  1. Oh dear - 'Jake Carpenter unimpressed by Metropolis' shock!