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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari
There have been a number of versions of this film. My original copy was an 8mm one. The is clearly the best. It is not significantly different from other recent releases except it is cleaner, the tints are more interesting and what is especially good is the recreation of the original style of the text for the english titles. The choice of two music tracks is fun and after...
Published on Feb. 20 2003 by Geoffrey Kragen

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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars KEEP AWAY!!
This is one of my favorite films of all time, and if must own it (yes, you must own it), DON'T get this edition -- get the Image Entertainment one (the other, more expensive edition). It's worth the extra 10 or so dollars. And let me tell you why:
1. The Image edition has the original film-stock color tinting, an important creative device and a big part of what...
Published on Sept. 14 2002 by Mike Conrado


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, Feb. 20 2003
By 
There have been a number of versions of this film. My original copy was an 8mm one. The is clearly the best. It is not significantly different from other recent releases except it is cleaner, the tints are more interesting and what is especially good is the recreation of the original style of the text for the english titles. The choice of two music tracks is fun and after listening to the contemporary one, I switched to the more traditional version. The condensed version of the film Genuine was also of interest.
For those who, like myself, love this classic example of early German silent film I cannot recommend this new release highly enough.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars KEEP AWAY!!, Sept. 14 2002
By 
Mike Conrado (Capitola, CA United States) - See all my reviews
This is one of my favorite films of all time, and if must own it (yes, you must own it), DON'T get this edition -- get the Image Entertainment one (the other, more expensive edition). It's worth the extra 10 or so dollars. And let me tell you why:
1. The Image edition has the original film-stock color tinting, an important creative device and a big part of what makes this such a beautiful film (especially for its time), this version does not.
2. The Image edition is beautifully transfered from a very nice print of the film, you can see everything as it was intended to be seen. I'm sure this is how the film looked when it was originally released. This edition is a terrible transfer from an already terrible print.
3. The Image edition has better music.
4. The Image edition has better intertitles.
5. The Image edition has an aditional audio commentary.
To sum it up, the Image edition isn't a piece of garbage, and it does this masterpiece justice. Don't waste your time with this edition. Sell your shoes if you can't afford the extra scratch, watching this DVD is painful. Trust me.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, Feb. 16 2003
By 
Stephen M. Leiker (Somerset, Ca United States) - See all my reviews
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The Image Entertainment edition of this great movie is astonishing. Don't take my word for it, just get it and enjoy this classic like you never have before. The new music adds suspense where it's needed. Turn up the volume, turn down the lights, grab your popcorn and commit yourself to this 1919 gem.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fine-Quality DVD, Feb. 22 2002
By 
E. Dolnack (Atlanta, GA USA) - See all my reviews
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This DVD is a good quality transfer. The picture is good considering it is from 1920. It is in full-screen, with color-tinting (blue for night scenes, yellow for interior scenes, etc.)
The soundtrack on this version (Image) is great! It is an eerily, serialism-esque score written just for this film. Some silent films have been given a "modern treatment" with contemporary scores, but this DVD is judiciouly been given an appropriately "period-feel" in relation to the time and place that this movie was made. The score fits the film extremely well and is a well crafted work.
The DVD also comes with a commentary soundtrack that teaches the viewer about the film and the time in which it was shot in Germany. There is plenty of explanation about Expressionism as an art form in film, literature, and art of that time. A must for any film student!
I highly reccomend this DVD. It was well worth the price! It's literally amazing that an eighty year old film can still entertain and surprise a completely foreign audience, but some things about human beings are just universal and this film encompasses much that is universal in mankind.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars good movie, May 8 2001
By 
Brian Williams (Livingston, NJ United States) - See all my reviews
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I've never been a huge fan of the silent film era. In fact I never watched silent films until a class a took. This was one of the 12 or so silent films we saw in the class and 1 of only 2 that I really liked.
The set design really sets the mood for the film. The scenery and acting were great. Conrad Veidt as Cesare was great as well as Werner Krauss as Dr. Caligari. I like the end of the film as well. The actual ending was not going to be that way it is. It's better this way. If you're not a fan of the silent era, start with this film. It's a good one.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Dream a little dream of me, July 1 2007
By 
bernie "xyzzy" (Arlington, Texas) - See all my reviews
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Two men are sitting on a cement bench by the garden wall. One casually says there are evil spirits all around. As a woman in white glides by the second man Francis (Friedrich Fehér) says that is my fiancée Jane (Lil Dagover) and let me tell you what happened to us.

As his story begins we are subjected to a weird world of light and twisted shadows. A string Dr. (Caligari played by Werner Krauss) brings a somnambulist (sleeping man played by Conrad Veidt) to a local fair. The somnambulist knows all things and can predict the future; he prophesizes correctly Allan's (friend of Francis and rival for Jane's hand) murder and pilfers Jane from her bed chamber. But how can this be; as Francis has been keeping an eye on the doc and the snoozer all night and they have not moved?

I leave you with this thought "Du mußt Caligari warden"

Metropolis (1927)
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5.0 out of 5 stars Classic German Expressionism!, May 6 2001
By 
Michael J. Chrush (Kent, WA United States) - See all my reviews
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"The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari" is a visual feast, and a definite inspiration for many horror films to follow. This film simply grasps your attention from beginning to end. From the beginning even we know this is no ordinary film as two asylum inmates are seen, one of them narrating his experience with meeting Dr. Caligari at a local carnival, who awakens a somnambulistic maniac who commits acts of murder commanded by his master. It seems we are watching a nightmare dreamt by the minds of madness. I won't spoil too much, but rest assured you will not regret adding this one to your collection. It is brilliant in every way.
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5.0 out of 5 stars German Expressionism At Its Height, Jan. 21 2000
By 
J. N. Valente "jnscav" (Evora, Portugal) - See all my reviews
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"Das Cabinet des Doktor Caligari" ia an extraordinary silent film. Its experimentalism is perfectly coherent with this artistic movements (un)laws. Distorted settings, horror superimposed upon them and an astonishing use of photography and art direction. Conrad Veidt as Cesar is beyond all superlatives. The plot (as far as there is one) suffers from the fact that the hospice scenes (at the very beginning & and at the very ending) offer a logic and proper explanation for the rest of the action - Lunacy In this way, "normality" (or normalicy?) is half-restored, authority put in its place, and the whole thimg dismissed as a madman's ravings. A pity that, really. Still, this is superb film making, superb set decor and superb acting. Only 5 stars can truly do it justice.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An "Expressive" Horror Classic, Dec 4 2003
By 
Michael R Gates (Nampa, ID United States) - See all my reviews
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A young man, Francis, relates to others this bizarre and amazing tale: Francis and his friend, Alan, visit a fair that happens to be in a small German town where some brutal murders have taken place. Dr. Caligari is the proprietor of an exhibit that features a chronic sleepwalker named Cesare who supposedly can make accurate prognostications. Francis and Alan are amused by this particular spectacle, but when they ask for a demonstration, they are a bit unnerved when Cesare predicts that Alan will be dead by morning.
When Alan is, in fact, murdered during the night, Francis suspects that Caligari and Cesare were involved in making Cesare's "prediction" come true, and he goes to the police with his suspicions. Unfortunately, the police have arrested another man for Alan's murder, and they give Francis the brush-off. Undeterred, Francis follows Caligari in hopes of obtaining proof of his suspicions. When they ultimately wind up at an insane asylum, Francis is shocked to learn that Caligari is the director of the institution. But with the help of Francis, it is soon revealed that Caligari has himself gone mad, and the good Doctor is subsequently hospitalized in his own institution. Or is he?...
THE CABINET OF DR. CALIGARI (1920; 1921 for the U.S. version) is one of the masterpieces of the silent era and, along with Fritz Lang's METROPOLIS (1927), is one of the best examples of German Expressionist cinema. Though the story is entertaining, the real genius lies not so much in the narrative as in the bizarre and surrealistic mise-en-scène. The sets do not reflect nature or reality but are instead highly stylized--using an expressionist form that reflects both cubist and fauvist influence--and are meant to project to the audience the psychological discordance of Caligari and other characters in the film. And the physical appearance of the characters, especially the principals, are also expressionistic exaggerations, making them more caricatures than characters and serving to heighten the sense of uneasiness and mental disharmony. So to put it succinctly, the film conveys its underlying theme of ubiquitous psychosis as much through visuals as through narrative--an especially good quality in the era of silent films--and this fact elevates it above mere entertainment to the summit of high art.
Any film student, cinema aficionado, or collector of old classics will definitely want to add this movie to their collections. But some contemporary viewers may find it difficult to appreciate THE CABINET OF DR. CALIGARI. Indeed, in this age of color "talkies," it is sometimes hard for even ardent film students and aficionados to catch all of the nuances in the narrative and visuals of a silent film, and sometimes two or more viewings may therefore be required. The wonderful collector's edition DVD from Image Entertainment offers a feature commentary by film historian Mike Budd, and a SECOND viewing with this commentary turned on will certainly help to clarify some of the more subtle aspects of this historical film. (For the first time through, don't watch the film with the commentary, as Mr. Budd does early on reveal some facts about the ending.)
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A gothic omen, June 20 2004
By 
Hiram Gomez Pardo (Valencia, Venezuela) - See all my reviews
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The cabinet was one of the most remarkable films of the german expressionism.
The bitter gaze about a hollow-eyed sleepwalker (Cesare) who commits murders underthe influence of Dr. Caligary was a clear methapor about what's going on in that dark times. After watching this film , please get the famous Edward Munch's painting titled The scream and establish the underground roads.
The hopeless and the horror are depicted in this movie with a clear message behind the score. Beware about the hidden demons in your mind .
Twelve years before the rise of Hitler, Caligari means obviously the word hypnotist who changes to Cesare in a murder; the anlogy is more than obvious. Don't you?
The world evidently was in another mood , but this warning call from a bizarre film concerned to a few people. Today we are capable after eighty five years , of feel the message.
Robert Wiene established a real pattern around the new possibilities of expression for the movies. He made The hands of Orlac also with Conrad Viet a legendary actor , and won too with that.
But Caligari shocked the destiny of a whole generation of directors (Howard Hawks in Scarface , for instance , Freaks of Tod Browning , Edgar Ullmer, Andre de Toth , James Whale's Frankenstein , and more recently Werner Herzog , Roger Corman or Lars von Triers ) to name just a few , but specially to a young english film maker called Alfred Hitchcock and another giant Orson Welles . If you remember the chase sequence in The third man under the streets of Vienna , or countless sequences employed as dramatic visuals resources and narrative devices of the English master , remember that Caligari was the sparking light.
A cul movie and one of the pioneers jewels of the german expressionism!
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Cabinet of Dr. Caligari
Cabinet of Dr. Caligari by Robert Wiene (DVD - 2004)
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