DHTML Menu By Milonic JavaScript

Classics of German Expressionist Cinema

Saturday, February 3, 1979
4:30 p.m. The Spiders (Die Spinnen)
Fritz Lang (Germany,1919)

Admission: $1.50

“The earliest available examples of Fritz Lang’s work are these first two episodes of a proposed serial; each episode stands as a separate film.... The hero, Kai Hoog, is pitted against a female villain, Lio-Sha, and the criminal gang, The Spiders, rivals in a search for, in the first part, Inca treasure in a subterranean city, and in the second, a diamond, the wearer of which will rule Asia. The production company intended the serial to break into the postwar foreign market, dominated by the American film industry and its Westerns. Lang has stated: ‘I simply wanted to film adventurous subjects.... I loved everything that was exuberant and exotic.’ The films relate to the tradition of Karl May, the German pulp writer, subject of Syberberg’s film, and more especially to the serials of Feuillade. Langian elements already present include underground chambers, use of mirrors, hypnosis, super-criminals....”

—British Film Institute

• Written and Directed by Fritz Lang. Photographed by Emil Schunemann and Karl Freund. With Carl de Vogy, Ressel Orla, Lil Dagover. (1919, 137 mins, music track, English intertitles, tinted print Courtesy of Images)