After his long and prolific Hollywood career, Fritz Lang returned to his native Germany at the behest of producer Artur Brauner and embarked on an ambitious two-film project that would eventually become known as his “Indian Epic.” The source material was the novel The Indian Tomb by Thea von Harbou, a book Lang had initially been hired to direct as a silent film in 1921, before being fired and replaced with Joe May. In the first of the two films, The Tiger of Eschnapur, Lang tells the story of a German architect (Paul Hubschmid) who arrives in India to build a temple for a Maharaja, whereupon the he promptly falls in love with the Maharaja’s intended bride (Debra Paget), whom he narrowly saves from becoming the titular tiger’s latest meal. Impeccably directed on a modest budget, en route to a thrilling cliffhanger ending, Lang’s late-career triumph proves the old adage that the enemy of art is the absence of limitations. –NYFF
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
Certainly quite campy and flamboyant. It's something that the die-hard Fritz Lang fans like myself will enjoy. But if you're not into his style, you would probably think of it as too gaudy. Otherwise, it contains all of Lang's idiosyncrasies with the Expressionist cinematography, garish set designs, and moral ambiguity. The lurid colours also complement the film very well.
So kitsch and dated, I yawned whenever I wasn't cringing or just feeling embarrassed.
eu acho tão doce e cool rever estes filmes, são outro mundo para mim...não penso tão densamente como tu...gosto do lado de aventuras no Lang...não ligo à história...há tanto film-making, cenários eerie...o guarda-roupa, a banda-sonora, as gajas dos 50's, wow...mas um é muito agreste man!mas há envelhecer mal e há o "merecer um 1", não?
Towards the end of his long career, Lang returned to a screenplay that he had originally written in the 1920's. Released in two parts, Part One of this Indian Epic tells the story of a love triangle between a despotic Maharaja, an architect and an exotic dancer. This is pure escapist adventure, not to be taken too seriously. However, the kitschness of the whole thing is a wonder to behold. Can't wait for Part Two....
The hero attempts to shoot out the sun in Fritz Lang’s The Tiger of Eschnapur.
The little-known connection between Fritz Lang and New German Cinema master Alexander Kluge.