Faust (1926)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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In this German film, Emil Jannings glowers his way through the role of Mephistopholes, who offers the aging Faust an opportunity to relive his youth, the price being Faust's soul. Though highly stylized, the film is unsettlingly realistic at times, especially during the execution of the unfortunate Gretchen.
Art House & International , Horror , Science Fiction & Fantasy
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Emil Jannings
as Mephisto
Camilla Horn
as Gretchen/Marguerite
Wilhelm Dieterle
as Valentin
Frieda Richard
as Gretchen/Marguerite's Mother
Frida Richard
as Mother
William Dieterle
as Valentin
Yvette Guilbert
as Aunt Marthe
Eric Barcley
as Duke of Parma
Eric Barclay
as Duke of Parma
Hanna Ralph
as Duchess of Parma
Werner Fuetterer
as Archangel
Hans Rameau
as Farmer
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Critic Reviews for Faust

All Critics (18) | Top Critics (6)

This extraordinary piece of artistry and craftsmanship integrates its dazzling special effects so seamlessly that they're indistinguishable from the film's narrative, poetry, and, above all, metaphysics.

Full Review… | September 25, 2007
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

As atmospheric and menacing a work as the expressionist movement ever produced.

Full Review… | September 25, 2007
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

Here is a picture which is as far removed from the ordinary movie as a Tintoretto painting.

Full Review… | March 24, 2006
New York Times
Top Critic

Murnau's version of the story of the man who sold his soul to the Devil (Jannings) in return for youth is visually extraordinary but dismally uneven in terms of its dramatic effect.

Full Review… | January 25, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

I sometimes feel, in this age of expert CGI, that I am being shown too much -- that technique is pushing aside artistry and imagination. The world of Faust is never intended to define a physical universe, but is a landscape of nightmares.

Full Review… | January 19, 2006
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

Still a classic example of eye-popping excess at a time when German filmmakers were among the most innovative in the world.

April 15, 2005
Detroit Free Press
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Faust

Incredible and iconic. Momentous. Certainly between a 4.5 and 5. Putting it at 5 because it really probably deserves every bit of praise it gets.

Kyle Meisch
Kyle Meisch

Super Reviewer


Yes, this movie has cool special effects and a classic tale, but I didn't really enjoy it. The story is great and it could have been much more exciting than what Murnau did with it. I've seen many movies with this same story, so you kinda get bored with it after a while, I suppose.

Aj V
Aj V

Super Reviewer


For people who can still appreciate something made in the prior century (and those numbers are dwindling), Murnau's vision of "Faust" begins with what was at the time a revolutionary visual, and still today is a provacative and effective image. There are any many variations on Faust, and I like the plot details of this one the best. The Faust and Mephistopheles are well acted; I particularly like the facial expressions of this Faust.

_kelly .King
_kelly .King

Super Reviewer

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