Typhoon (1933 film)
|Directed by||Robert Wiene|
Adolf Noé |
Melchior Lengyel (play) |
Liane Haid |
Viktor de Kowa
Stefan Rényi |
|Edited by||Carl Otto Bartning|
|Distributed by||Terra Film (Germany)|
25 August 1933 (Vienna, 1st version) |
27 July 1934 (Berlin, 2nd version)
Typhoon (German: Taifun) is a 1933 German drama film directed by Robert Wiene and starring Liane Haid, Viktor de Kowa and Valéry Inkijinoff. It was based on the 1911 play Typhoon by the Hungarian writer Melchior Lengyel. It was the last German film made by Wiene, who had been a leading director of German silent cinema.
A Japanese doctor, on a secret mission to Paris for his country, becomes romantically involved with a cabaret singer at a Parisian nightclub. His entire mission is put at risk when he kills a rival for her love, a French journalist and blackmailer.
Production and release
The film was produced by Wiene's own independent production company. It was made around the time of the changeover from the Weimar Republic to Nazi Germany. In Germany the film was banned for several reasons, particularly what was perceived as the unflattering portrayal of Europeans in contrast to the noble Asian characters. The censors were also concerned that the incompetence of the French justice system would be taken by audiences to mean the German one, undermining their faith in it.
The film had its debut in the Austrian capital Vienna. It was later released heavily re-shot under the alternative title Polizeiakte 909. The new version dramatically altered its plot from the original and the Japanese are now portrayed as unsympathetic villains. The new version was approved by German censors and released in 1934 although its critical reception was poor. It is possible that Wiene, who had left for Budapest in 1933 following the Nazi rise to power, did not personally work on the new version.
- Liane Haid as Helene Laroche
- Viktor de Kowa as Charles Renard-Brinski
- Valéry Inkijinoff as Doctor Nitobe Tokeramo
- Veit Harlan as Inose Hironari
- Arthur Bergen as Yoshikawa
- Paul Mederow as Vorsitzender
- Bernhard Goetzke as Staatsanwalt
- Paul Henckels as Verteidiger
- Josef Dahmen as Werkdetektiv
- Friedrich Ettel as Kriminalrat Morre
- Jung, Uli & Schatzberg, Walter. Beyond Caligari: The Films of Robert Wiene. Berghahn Books, 1999.