Highlight of the IV. Weimarer Stummfilm-Retrospektive: With LIVE MUSIC by Staatskapelle Weimar and COMPOSER &
CONDUCTOR Robert Israel
Lorenz Lubota, a dreamer and minor poet, is seized by an undying passion for the wealthy Veronika. But his love remains unrequited and Lorenz’s castle in the air turns into fantasy and madness. He neglects his life, loses his job, becomes caught up in a maelstrom of emotions and chases his Veronika like a phantom. Dream and reality become confused and end with theft and murder. »Phantom« was the highlight of the early film versions of Hauptmann’s works. Its rich visuals amalgamated impressionism and expressionism in a densely atmospheric dreamscape which Béla Balázs hailed as a work of genius, »presenting the world in mood of a spirit, illuminating a feeling: objectified lyricism.«
The American composer, conductor and pianist Robert Israel has created an insightful piece of orchestral music for Murnau’s early masterpiece, at times differentiated like chamber music, at times opulent and dramatic. It is played by the Staatskapelle Weimar conducted by the composer.
Germany 1922 | 121 mins | FORMAT digital, tinted | DIRECTOR Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau | SCREENPLAY Thea von Harbou, based on the novel by Gerhart Hauptmann | WITH Alfred Abel, Frida Richard, Aud Egede-Nissen, Hans Heinrich von Twardowski, Lil Dagover