It seems this filmmaking legend is unwillingly taking part in some cult activities.
What a headline… I’m still not entirely sure what to make of this but German news sites are reporting that F.W. Murnau, one of the more influential German Expressionist directors of the 1920s, well-known for the horror classic Nosferatu – and one of my personal favorites, Faust – has had his skull dug up and removed from his grave in Germany. The gravediggers, who are suspected to be taking part in some sort of cult-ish (cinephile?) ritual, have yet to be caught but it’s more likely some sort of prank.
Not to condone this behaviour – grave digging is always gross and disrespectful – but I’m now imagining this scene as if Murnau had directed it himself, his expertly wielded shadows and ability to find tension in the simplest of compositions. I especially love wax, that hints at some candles. (And cult-ish undertones). Regardless, I’ll use any excuse to talk about Murnau because his films are wonderful. I still have nightmares about The Last Laugh since I watched it in film school and his film Sunrise won multiple awards at the first ever Academy Awards. Dude knew how to challenge an audience – I rewatched Nosferatu just a couple weeks ago and it’s still terrifying.
Normally I’d ask you guys what you make of this but I don’t expect you to make much more of it than I did. Instead, what’s your favorite Murnau film? Lots of options – didn’t even mention Phantom and I like that film a lot.