Das Cabinet des Dr. Caligari (1919)

Friedrich-Wilhelm-Murnau-Stiftung   |   Germany

Made in 1919 by director Robert Wiene for the Decla production company THE CABINET OF DR. CALIGARI is deemed to be the prototype of expressionist filmmaking in Germany. The psychological thriller deals with a young man called Francis, who faces the mysterious Dr. Caligari on the local fair. Caligari exhibits the somnambulant Cesare, who foretells the death of Francis' best friend. Soon murder is spread around the village. Francis finds out about Caligari being the head of the local asylum and using the sleepwalking Cesare to commit those crimes. Embedded in the background story of Francis himself being an inmate of the asylum, the plot leaves open the possibility of various interpretations. DAS CABINET DES DR. CALIGARI is one of the most influential productions of Weimar Cinema. Known for its unique expressionist style, it had great impact on genres (e.g. the horror-film). With its obscure and lunatic characters it depicts the shellshock of World War I. Previous restoration attempts couldn't measure up with the original quality of this masterpiece. Now for the first time the almost complete original camera negative was used for a full 4K digital restoration. Previous photochemical restorations couldn't transfer the specific look of the original colours. Based on detailed analysis of the toning and tinting of original distribution prints, it was possible to digitally reconstruct the colours on a level very close to the original. Frames missing in the camera negative were supplemented by using images from positive prints which were adjusted by digital compositing. FURTHER INFORMATION: 1. Describe the element/s used for restoration, stating gauge and nature and specific problems associated with them (up to 100 words): Original camera negative from 1919 (Bundesarchiv-Filmarchiv, Berlin) Base for the restoration. Contains original intertitles as flashtitles. Problem: First act missing. Perforation damages, numerous jump cuts caused by missing frames. 16mm copy from 1935 (Deutsche Kinemathek, Berlin) Reference for missing intertitles. Two 35mm copies for Latin-American distribution from before 1923, tinted and toned (Filmmuseum Düsseldorf, Archivo Nacional de la Imagen-SODRE, deposited at Cineteca di Bologna) Completion of missing shots, Reconstruct historic colouring, Identification of editing mistakes in the negative. 35mm tinted and toned copy from 1920s (Cinémathèque francaise, Paris), two 35mm tinted copies from mid 1920s (British Film Institute, London, Cinémathèque Royale, Bruxelles) Completion of missing shots. Problem: Inferior to the camera negative in terms of contrast and focus, numerous scratches. 2. State the original aspect ratio and format (up to 100 words): 35mm, 1:1,33, tinted and toned 3. Outline the restored aspect ratio and format (up to 100 words): 2K and 4K DCP, coloured, 1:1,33 (side matted), stereo 2.0 (music) HDCAM SR, coloured, 1:1,33 (side matted), stereo 2.0 (music) 4. Explain where the work was carried out for each title (including labs and facility houses) and broken down where there are multiple titles in an entry (up to 100 words): Friedrich-Wilhelm-Murnau-Stiftung, Wiesbaden: Supervision of the restoration, research and collating of material, reconstruction of editing, colour map. L'Immagine Ritrovata - Film Restoration and Conservation, Bologna: 4K scan from nitrate sources, digital image restoration, colour correction, data preservation, 35mm duplication from camera negative and intertitles reconstruction. Documentation of the source material's tints and tones by Dr. Barbara Flückiger of Swiss research project DIASTOR for digital recreation of historic tinting and toning. 2eleven II zeitgenössische musik projekte and Hochschule für Musik Freiburg for the score inspired by original music pieces from Giuseppe Becce of the DCP, HDCAM SR and DVD/BluRay release 5. What methodology was used? (up to 100 words): Identification and dating of original export prints in order to reconstruct the colour map of the lost German distribution version. Latin American prints identified as the most original surviving prints. Identification of editing mistakes in the camera negative due to multiple re-conforming of the negative. 4K scan (Arriscan) of camera negative and additional sources. Reconstruction of 67 missing shots by using various distribution copies. In cases of large differences in quality of the materials, digital compositing was used to adjust missing frames. Retouching of physical damages. Automatic pass for dust removal. Removal of thick scratches only in cases, when possible without creating digital artefacts. Analogue artefacts which resulted in the film's production history were respected. 6. What preservation elements have been generated and where will they be stored? (up to 100 words): Photochemical duplication of camera negative (b/w dupe positive) Data preservation on LTO of 4K raw scan, 4K DSM