Musée d'Orsay: Mockery


Benjamin Christensen
1927. Silent. USA
63 mins

The unfortunate adventures of a simple peasant during the Russian Revolution, where he is exploited by some and mistreated by others.

Christensen was often compared with Tod Browning, and so it was not surprising that he should eventually work with Lon Chaney, Browning’s favourite actor. Chaney plays a bestial character, guided principally by his own baser desires (including sexual urges, in some quite daring scenes), but who arouses our sympathy through his utter helplessness in the face of a cruel and cynical world where Christensen sets aristocrats and Bolsheviks against each other.

Benjamin ChristensenL'idiot1927© The Danish Filminstitute / Stills & Posters Archive

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