Directed by Paul Leni
In this rarely seen masterwork of the German Expressionist movement, a trilogy of terror is woven around the wax figures of a carnival sideshow.
An idealistic young poet (Wilhelm Dieterle, later to become a Hollywood director) is hired to write stories about the Chamber of Horrors' three most notorious figures: Jack the Ripper (Werner Krauss of The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari), Ivan the Terrible (Conrad Veidt of Cabinet... and Contraband) and Haroun Al-Raschid (Emil Jannings of The Blue Angel and The Last Laugh). But as the uncanny tales flow from the poet's pen, he finds himself enveloped in the nightmare worlds of his own creation.
One of the most innovative stylists of the German silent cinema, director Paul Leni (The Cat and the Canary, The Man Who Laughs) applied a variety of visual techniques to this ambitious anthology film, drawing from his years as a set designer under the great Max Reinhardt. From the fairy-tale Arabia of the Al-Raschid story (said to have inspired Douglas Fairbanks to make The Thief of Bagdad), to the dark and oppressive kingdom of Ivan the Terrible, to the whirling lights and swordlike shadows fo the carnival through which Jack the Ripper stalks the protagonist, Leni managed to raise the techniques fo German Expressionism to new conceptual heights.
*This Kino on Video edition of Waxworks was mastered from a 35mm element restored by the Cineteca del Comune di Bologna, with laboratory work performed by L'Immagine Ritovata. It features the original intertitles from a 1924 British release print.
Also available in box set.
DVD Extras Include:
- Paul Leni's 1926 short, Rebus Film I
- Excerpt from Douglas Fairbanks's The Thief of Bagdad
Interested in bringing Waxworks to your school or library? If you'd like to have an in-class viewing, on-campus screening, or purchase the DVD for your library's collection, please contact Estelle Grosso or call (212) 629-6880 with your request.
Waxworks may also be available with Public Performance Rights (PPR) and Digital Site Licensing (DSL) for colleges and universities. To purchase the DVD with PPR or DSL, please contact Estelle Grosso or call (212) 629-6880. Click here to learn more at Kino Lorber Edu.
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