Saturday, June 30, 2012

Ich bei Tag und du bei Nacht (1932)



A nightclub waiter and a manicurist share the small apartment room. Though they share the closet, the furniture, even sleep in the same bed, they have never met. Why? He has the room during the day and she the night. They hate each other and complain about other's belongings in their hair all the time. The story gets complicated when they do meet each other and fall in love, without knowing who they are....

Located somewhere between "Lonesome (1929)" and "The Shop Around The Corner (1940)", this UFA production is a sheer delight. Very smooth plot handling, nice art production and lovable characters played by von Nagy and Fritsch. Come to think of it, both "Lonesome" and "The Shop Around The Corner" were directed by Europeans, Paul Fejos (Hungary) and Ernst Lubitsch (German), respectively. Well, "The Apartment (1960)" is also by an Austria-Hungarian who wrote screenplays for German films until Hitler came along. I wonder if this "parallel love/hate relationships", "sharing the apartment" or "not knowing she/he is your neighbor" has any particular origin in the pool of Austrian-Hungarian-German storytelling. Does anyone know?



Ich bei Tag und du bei Nacht (1932)

Directed by Ludwig Berger
Produced by Erich Pommer
Starring Käthe von Nagy, Willy Fritsch
Written by Robert Liebmann, Hans Székely
Original Music by Werner R. Heymann
Cinematography by Friedl Behn-Grund
Editing by Viktor Gertler, Heinz G. Janson
Production Design by Otto Hunte
Costume Design by Joe Strassner
Country Germany
Language German

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