I finally watched it! So happe about it because I was going to do that for quite a while. So, I was getting ready for 3-hour long silent movie with amazing sets (as I was told) but which would be very boring. However, I found the movie very intertaining and I really enjoyed watching it. Some of the scenes looked familiar and reminded me of some contamporary films I watched so I could really see why everyone should watch this movie.
The sets are really good for that time however, some of them are still very theatrical with quite obviously painted backfround and lacking realism. However, the movie is definitely very ambitious and there are lots and lots of diffrent places where action takes place and the contrasts in light is what makes the sets look really picturesue (it is german impressionism afterall, so the contrasts are essentual). The whole production must have been really ambitious for 1927 with all those sets and actors involved which made me wondered about the budget they had for the film.
Despite all the beautifull and complicated extreme wide shots of the city (which were obviously models and stop-motion as I would guess) I think that my favourite scene would be the dancing scene which is just so amusing and quite interesting in terms of camera angles and cuts they made.
It is very interesting methaphor as well because this is the scene where people trying to get to that evil version of Maria with all those hands and how they try to touch her. There also gonna be another scene where actual real Maria’s trying to save the children from the flooding and then all the children raise their hands up and try to get to her as well. This is the contrast the whole film is about with Maria being exposed as a saint with the scene in the chirch and the Robot version of her being the devil standing on 7 sins who hail her.
Well, of course the most interesting part for the set designer would be the sets and how it is actually posiible to create that kind of elaborate decorations in that many different forms without using the technology we have today. I guess, you just had to be very inventive!