Opening Statement

But if you are looking for a film that showcases the early use of sound in motion pictures, don’t fear, because the film we are highlighting this week should do the trick. Fritz Lang’s M, released four years after The Jazz Singer, is one of the first complete masterpieces of the sound era. But it’s also much more than that – by Aaron Pinkston, February 20, 2017

In Context: On Murder, Kangaroo Courts, and Ambivalent Politics

Fritz Lang’s masterpiece M was immediately a film viewers are eager to read as a reflection on its historical moment and political context. Produced during what turned out to be the final years of Germany’s short-lived Weimar Republic, it condenses the turmoil of a society caught between official and unofficial means of retribution into a single story about the hunt for a serial killer – by Patrick Brown, February 21, 2017

First Viewing: Murder and Mob Mentality

There’s a barrier that exists around films like Fritz Lang’s M, one that keeps modern audiences at bay. A long-time part of the canon, an air of mythos surrounds it that makes it feel inaccessible—one of those movies you watch because you’re supposed to if you’re a true cinephile, not because you want to – by Sarah Gorr, February 22, 2017

Scenessential: Sound and Silence

Lang's pioneering use of sound not only helped establish sound as a way of explaining relationships between images on the screen, but perhaps more importantly, showed how sound and silence could be used together to increase the emotional impact of film – by Alex Moore, February 23, 2017

Related Review: Hangmen Also Die!

About a decade into his Hollywood career, Lang completed the circle with Hangmen Also Die, one of the few films he set in Europe. Like M, Hangmen Also Die is centered around an all-out manhunt, although a particularly different one. Here, the man on the run is the hero, the assassin of a Nazi official in Czechoslovakia – by Aaron Pinkston, February 24, 2017

The Cinessential Podcast, Ep. 11

This week, the Cinessential crew chats about Fritz Lang's early sound masterpiece M. Topics include: the film's use of sound, Peter Lorre, the incredible final setpiece, and the Vampire of Dusseldorf – by The Cinessential, February 27, 2017