The Indian Tomb Part 2: The Tiger of Bengal (1921)

Article #593 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing date: 10-29-2002
Posting date: 3-24-2003

Fritz Lang is one of my all-time favorite directors; Joe May (unless I see several other movies of his that really impress me) is not. Now that I’ve completed the grueling task of watching both halves of this movie, I’m glad I didn’t try it at one shot. The story is good and the sets are quite impressive, but I found Joe May’s direction tedious. He had a passion for long, lingering shots, and there are so many scenes in this movie where the camera just dwells pointlessly on people walking down stairs, people walking towards each other, people reacting to things, etc. that I found myself actually wishing that I’d stumbled instead on a print at the wrong projection speed so these scenes would go by faster. It has a great ending, but there was no reason that this whole thing should have lasted three-and-a-half hours; I only wonder what Lang would have done with it if HE had directed it. He did direct the remake, though; maybe I’ll tackle that one some time.

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