Das Cabinet des Dr. Caligari. (The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari)
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Das Cabinet des Dr. Caligari. (The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari)
In one of the most influential films of the silent era, Werner Krauss plays the title character, a sinister hypnotist who travels the carnival circuit displaying a somnambulist named Cesare (Conrad Veidt). In one tiny German town, a series of murders coincides with Caligari's visit. When the best friend of hero Francis (Friedrich Feher) is killed, the deed seems to be the outgrowth of a romantic rivalry over the hand of the lovely Jane (Lil Dagover). Francis suspects Caligari, but he is ignored by the police. Investigating on his own, Francis seemingly discovers that Caligari has been… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 100%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"A case can be made that Caligari was the first true horror film."
‑ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"Undoubtedly one of the most exciting and inspired horror movies ever made."
‑ , Time Out
"This film has madness running all the way through it, a madness that seeps from story into reality and back again."
‑ John Bleasdale, Electric Sheep
"With its unusual look and neatly folding method of storytelling "The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari" is an artistically uninhibited silent horror film that still sends chills."
‑ Cole Smithey, ColeSmithey.com
"still creepy good entertainment on a rainy day"
‑ Jay Antani, Cinema Writer
"This is more than just a textbook classic; the narrative frame creates ambiguities that hold certain elements of the story in disturbing suspension. A one-of-a-kind masterpiece."
‑ Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
"This freshly 4K-ed masterpiece of German Expressionism deserves to be seen on the big screen. Track it down and be rewarded with possibly cinema's first ever twist ending."
‑ Anna Smith, Empire Magazine
"A foundational nightmare vision"
‑ Fernando F. Croce, CinePassion
"Pre-dating even early genre landmarks Nosferatu (1922) and Metropolis (1926) by some distance, Robert Wiene's silent film is both influential and one of a kind."
‑ Catherine Bray, Film4
"A classic. Visually stunning and more experimental than anything coming out today."
‑ Beth Accomando, KPBS.org
"Robert Wiene has made perfect use of settings designed by Hermann Warm, Walter Reimann and Walter Roehrig, settings that squeeze and turn and adjust the eye and through the eye the mentality."
‑ Variety Staff, Variety
"Other areas of innovation and influence are often overstated, but its silent scream still registers."
‑ Jamie Graham, Total Film
"One of the first -- and still one of the greatest -- psychological horror movies."
‑ , Total Film
"Even if taken as social or Freudian statement, Caligari's real star attraction is in the visuals."
‑ Donald J. Levit, ReelTalk Movie Reviews
"The influence of Robert Wiene's Caligari is so great that it threatens to obscure the work itself."
‑ Rob Humanick, Projection Booth

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