Wednesday, September 21, 2011

59. M


This film will amaze, shock, and disturb you.

So this is the first movie about a serial killer.  Nowadays, there are thousands of movies about psycho killers and I was really interested to see what the first one looked like.  Of course, I was expecting cheesiness, tired techniques, and a storyline that was very safe.  Wow.  Just wow.

This film starts with the murder of a little girl.  Like in all good horror movies, what is not shown is even more disturbing than what is shown.  It then becomes one of those classics where you follow the stories of both the detectives and the killer.

Now, I have never taken a film class so I really can't tell you all the innovative techniques used (though there were a lot!).  I can identify the first use of a voiceover, the great character development, and the way the director would choose really carefully what to show and what not to show.  Don't be arrogant enough to believe that watching horror films from the 30s won't scare you.  I think my now wet pants will prove you wrong (just kidding; or am I?).

RATING:****- (just because I can't watch it again; too disturbing)

Interesting Facts:

The German language gets on my nerves.

I am watching Se7en with my sister whenever she visits next so I am exciting to compare the two.

Fritz Lang also did Metropolis which I really did not like.

Apparently Lang was a huge jerk and threw Peter Lorre down a flight of stairs.

Nazis banned this in 1934.

Lang cast real criminals for the last scene.

Peter Lorre and Fritz Lang both had Jewish heritage and fled Germany.  Lang's wife was a Nazi party member.  Another level of creepy gets added to the film.

MGM had a meeting where they discussed how they could make films more like M.

Available on YouTube:


  1. This is the best movie Lang ever did and in top 10 of the thirties. There is so much to like here and I have watched it multiple times. Only negative is that I hate when children gets violated. That opening scene is almost too much.

    1. I agree. It is really upsetting. I think if it hadn't been done so well, I wouldn't be able to watch it.

  2. I doubt that you'd be allowed to make that film nowadays

    Bloody amazing though. Peter Lorre is stunning in everything I've ever seen him do so I'm looking forward to seeing more of him in the list.

    1. I agree. And even if they tried I can't imagine that it would recapture the brilliant subtlety in this film.