Metropolis | Chicago Reader


147 minutes

The great Fritz Lang created this chilling 1926 evocation of a mechanized utopia run by underground slave labor. The narrative details are essentially the old proletarian/leisure-class cant, but the visual impact of Lang's bizarre geometric sets and Karl Freund's superb photography hasn't diminished. (DD) This 35-millimeter Munich Film Archive restoration from the mid-1990s incorporated stills and intertitles to represent missing scenes and ran 147 minutes at silent speed (16 frames per second); it's since been superseded by a longer version, though both are considerably shorter than the original version, now lost, which ran close to 210 minutes at silent speed.

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