5 July 2006 | Cineanalyst
The same director, cinematographer and writer of "The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari" made this subsequent picture, "Genuine". Likewise, it is also an Expressionist film (one of the few made during Weimar Germany, contrary to what Lotte Eisner and the use by some of "expressionism" as an umbrella term for almost all German cinema of the period might suggest). Additionally, similar to "Caligari", the main body of "Genuine" is framed as a dream. Yet, I wasn't engulfed into the universe of it as I was with "Caligari".
The story, although just as peculiar, isn't as involving, which is unfortunately probably, in part, because the Kino release is only a condensed version. The framing of scenes is just as prosaic and theatrical as that in "Caligari"--if not more so. As well, the stylized acting seems more overdone and obtrusive this time. But, more importantly, the problem is the sets, which I can't see the entire version improving much upon. The Expressionist set designs are equally strange, with odd angels and geometric shapes. The production, however, leaves too much space open and unfilled, which is the largest reason that "Genuine" isn't as involving, or captivating, as "Caligari".