Born in Vienna in 1890, Fritz Lang was brought up in Viennese middle-class comfort by his Roman Catholic father Anton and his Jewish mother Paula Schleisinger who both hoped that young Fritz would become an architect. But like so many middle-class children of the new century, Lang was fascinated by the pulp and fantasy literature of his day, the art world both in and outside Vienna and a potent new form of entertainment that invited artistic scrutiny and craftsmanship, the motion picture. Though the teenaged Lang attended school as his parents wished, he secretly haunted the cafe’s and cabarets of Vienna and intended to become a painter like his idols Klimt and Schile. At aged 21 Lang’s yearning took him to Paris where he lived in Bohemian splendor until the outbreak of W.W.I. Returning to Vienna, Lang enlisted in the Austrian army where he repeatedly saw combat, was wounded at least three times and decorated twice.
It was while on leave recuperating from one of these wounds… read more
Fritz Lang gives a Nazi espionage thriller first rate film noir treatment. The seance scene is brilliant as is the final rooftop shootout. Ministry of Fear is so underrated it pisses me off. Maybe if it weren't for its strong anti-cake stance more people would know about it.
Familiar elements of adventure and romance take a paranoid turn in Fritz Lang’s underrated noir, finally available on US DVD.
The Vienna International Film Festival begins, including a complete Fritz Lang retrospective.
One of the downsides of going to the Rotterdam Film Festival (more on which next week) was having to miss a whole week of Film Forum’s essential