Max Ophuls' cinematic adaptation of Arthur Schnitzler's play 'Reigen' dramatizes that play about interlocking couples coupling in turn of the century Vienna with blase wit, bringing to bear a careful eye for costumes and set design and a dash of sophisticated technical experimentation consistent with the tenor of the source material. The structure is somewhat gimmicky in that it begins with two characters, a soldier and a prostitute, meeting and sleeping together and then proceeds on to the soldier's next tryst, after which is shown his lover's next tryst and so on until ending up back with the prostitute having gone up and down the social strata of society via sexual contacts but to his credit Ophuls' film doesn't feel gimmicky. Instead each encounter is carefully staged to explore some aspect of this theme such as love, desire, impotence, or jealousy. The settings are elaborately theatrical and Ophuls' richly embroiders Schnitzler's characters by carefully staging the scenes in elaborately furnished private dining rooms, carnivals, brothels, and bedrooms, bringing out the Freudian symbolism of, for example, the saber of an officer. This film's account of the libido leaves a sophisticated, world-weary impression with the viewer as its elaborate stagecraft can only partly conceal the endless repetition of what makes the world go round.