István Szabó × 3
- Hungary/West Germany1981
- István Szabó
- 146 DCP
- April 10, 2020 through
- April 16, 2020
“A startling film … Klaus Maria Brandauer is a marvel.”David Thomson, The New Biographical Dictionary of Film
The pre-eminent Hungarian filmmaker István Szabó achieved worldwide fame with the great success of Mephisto, a powerful, perceptive historical drama whose many honours included the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film. Austrian actor Klaus Maria Brandauer, in his first of several roles for Szabó, is superb as Hendrik Höfgen, a good-natured, leftist-leaning, but morally weak actor who, under the patronage of a Goebbels-like figure, becomes the leading figure in Nazi-era German theatre. Only too late does he realize that he has sold his soul in the process. Mephisto offers a chilling study of how a series of small compromises, betrayals, and careerist self-deceptions can add up to a bargain of Faustian proportions. Adapted from Klaus Mann’s 1936 roman à clef (Höfgen is a thinly-disguised portrait of prominent actor Gustaf Gründgens, Mann’s brother-in-law), the film made Brandauer an international star.
“A performance of electrifying power … The film is breathtaking.”Roger Ebert
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