Der Blaue Engel (The Blue Angel) - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Der Blaue Engel (The Blue Angel) Reviews

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February 25, 2013
A real powerful and effective quality film, from the early days of sound cinema.
January 12, 2013
A college professor gives up his quiet and tranquil life for the love of a beautiful cold hearted night club singer. This film represents the debut and immediate star making performance of Marlene Dietrich, who is sexy but deadly in this racy and cold blooded von Sternberg film. The costumes and mise en scene remain beautiful regardless and aged gracefully. Two versions of the film exist, the German one and the English one. The English version, in comparison, is quite rushed, so the German one should be favoured.
January 1, 2013
dietrich is fantastic in the film that made her a star and jannings is terrifyingly good as a man slowly descending into madness. can't think of another song which better sums up the essence of a film than "falling in love again"...
December 14, 2012
I Love Movies, 1941's Citizen Kane Is My Favorite Film.
June 16, 2012
I don't understand German (I'm borrowing a German copy from a friend) but I can still follow it enough that it's interesting. If you're a fan black & white films and old Hollywood, it's worth a watch.
June 10, 2012
Still impressive early 30's German expressionistic drama here about a cranky school teacher's fall from grace when he falls for a german music-hall-whore-house singer by the name of Lola Lola. Both Emil Jennings and Marlene Dietrich are stunning here, with the acting nods going to Jennings. Mixed in are some great songs of course, and surprisingly, some very funny bits. A must see for anyone serious about cinema, this obviously was pre-code before there ever was such a thing.
½ June 2, 2012
A great German film.
May 13, 2012
This movie is sad, but the story is good, especially the ending.
½ May 8, 2012
This is most often remembered for one performance, but the intense dramatic tension that occurs is a team effort, and Marlene Dietrich's performance would hardly have the power it does without Emil Jannings' painful breakdown. This is the kind of tragedy marked from scene one, and though its conclusion seems inevitable, it is not easy to watch, nor to shake off. Joseph von Sternberg shows masterful direction and a vision which told a story still risque by today's standards. It says something about a director when he can shoot Marlene and anyone else in the same frame and not have the former absorb complete audience attention. In fact, there's a perfect symmetry between her dangerous screen persona and Jannings' innocent one; the audience is forced into a situation where they must choose between enjoying the force of Marlene's cruel but sexy manipulation and helping a man too blinded by his own naivety find his way out of a terrible darkness. It's a classic story of hunter and hunted, of the power of the siren, of curiosity and the cat.; and this one is electric.
May 5, 2012
a film that boosted the career of its beloved star, marlene dietrich. a classy tale of doomed morality
½ April 28, 2012
Nunca había odiado a ningún personaje de película y hasta ahora es la única.
½ March 14, 2012
Her name was Lola Lola, she was a showgirl showgirl
March 6, 2012
Complex film for its day. A little old fashioned in the story department, but the cinematography still seems fresh.
December 29, 2011
A film of historical value. Not only Marlene Dietrich's breakthrough performance but also starring Emil Jannings fresh from his first ever Best Actor Oscar. Also the first major German talkie and directed by legend Josef von Sternberg. And, oh yes, it's an adaptation of a Heinrich Mann story. That's the trivia about it that makes it a worthy experience itself.

It's about a school professor who falls for a variete dancer in the bar "Der Blaue Engel".
Although that may sound like a love story it's nothing like that. No love story would have ever been so dark and cruel to his main character. Emil Jannings' professor is tore down by Lola (the very dancer he even marries) and finds himself ripped off of both his money and his bourgeois attitude.
What's left is a broken man and Jannings is so good at it that he even overshadows Dietrich's performance in my opinion.

Der Blaue Engel is at its best when the two share scenes as in the beginning when the strict and well-educated professor is twisted around her little finger by her sheer beauty and unexpected toughness.

It's a nice flick that I saw incidentally on TV this afternoon, especially the performances and the mood are great although the plot was a bit rushed and disjointed sometimes.
Super Reviewer
½ December 5, 2011
Joseph von Sternberg shot two versions of this film. One was in German and the other in English. Apparently they are very much the same. But I only saw the English version, and I almost wish I had seen the other one. The same cast was used, so you can understand that some of the German actors had a very thick accent that was hard to understand most of the time, and half the line is still in German with no subtitles. That being said, it's not as bad as making the story confusing.

By today's pacing standard, The Blue Angel would probably be 25 minutes shorter, as it drags in some part and takes a while to get started in the beginning. It was released in 1930, the first sound film was released 3 years prior to this, and it becomes obvious they were still in the experimenting stage. Many scenes still work as if it was a silent movie, the acting also, but when the sound is used, it becomes very interesting. The director has a very good idea of what he could do with it and for me that's the most interesting part of the film. I should also mention the use of light, shadows and sets, as there is a little German expressionism here and there, and it's always effective. The Blue Angel might be slow, but it's not boring, cause it has a very interesting story and the character development is very effective.
November 28, 2011
What a sad tale of love and the heartache it can cause, in a beautiful film by Josef von Sternberg.
November 26, 2011
Superb acting in this misanthropic drama - reminds me of Raging Bull in some ways
½ November 15, 2011
Tuesday, November 15, 2011

(1930) The Blue Angel
(In German with English subtitles)

The rise and fall centering on an older respected school professor Immanuel Rath (Emil Jannings)once falling for a young cabaret singer Lola (Marlene Dietrich)!

Although, films with similar themes to this has been made before, such as "Of Human Bondage", "The Heartbreakers" and "The Last Seduction" to name a few, I have to say this one is still the best since alot of older unattractive males of today can relate to the lead guy in question, which questions our choices about life in general about how much are single older men are willing to sacrifice to get a long lasting relationship with any attractive girl twice younger than you! It's also a film about man's only downfall from a woman for which females are normally the victims as a result of men whether it's war, laws, rules etc.. I must confess that I didn't like this film when I first saw it in the 90's since I easily identified with the respected professor and is mostly centered on him than the on Marlene Dietrich whose the center of the film or a goal, but as I grew older I realized that the professor has no one else to blame but himself, and as a reult may end up giving this film a higher rating once I get older myelf!

3 out of 4
½ September 11, 2011
Josef von Sternberg's early German talkie is fascinating on so many levels, particularly as a document of the state of German film before the rise of the Nazis (a chilling note - Emil Jannings would go on to join the Nazi party, and co-star Kurt Gerron would be murdered at Auschwitz). The decadence of Berlin nightlife is on full view here, and would hardly be seen again in America after the advent of the Hayes Code. The story is deceptively simple; stuffy and fastidious English professor Immanuel Rath (Jannings), in trying to uphold the moral fiber of his students, confronts sultry nightclub singer Lola Lola (Dietrich, in her electrifying debut), but like his young charges, becomes ensnared by her feminine charms - to the point where he ends up resigning from his school and marrying her. From there, the downward spiral to his inevitable degradation commences with the suddenness of a lamp being turned off, and what could easily have been a comedy during the first act becomes a pitiful and sordid exhibition as Rath is reduced to a mere servant, a clown, and finally, a cuckold - the terrifying unfolding of his demise is painted in the unmistakeably bleak and perverse tones which informed much of the art of the suffering Wiemar years. When Rath reaches his breaking point, it is uncomfortable even for today's audiences to watch - the strangled cries of his mental breakdown are on a par with Peter Lorre's shrieks at the end of Fritz Lang's 'M' in terms of sheer hysterical desperation, and will haunt the viewer for some time. However, the horror here is somewhat offset by the pleasure of seeing young Dietrich perform 'Falling In Love Again' .
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