The Return of Dr. Mabuse (1961)

aka Im Stahlnetz des Dr. Mabuse
Article 3037 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 8-31-2009
Posting Date: 12-7-2009
Directed by Harald Reinl
Featuring Gert Frobe, Lex Barker, Daliah Lavi
Country: West Germany / France / Italy

Evidence that incriminates an American crime syndicate is stolen from a murdered man. Inspector Lohmann investigates the murder, but every path he takes leads to another murder. He begins to suspect that there is another criminal mastermind behind it all. Could it be that Dr. Mabuse is not dead after all?

I really like the Dr. Mabuse movies; they’re much easier to follow than a lot of the Edgar Wallace krimis of the time. I like this one as well; Gert Frobe is fun and likable as Inspector Lohmann, and there’s a number of intriguing plot elements as well. However, some moments don’t work very well; in particular, the murder of a man just as he’s about to reveal an important clue comes off as a tad comic, and there are moments where I feel elements have been borrowed from other Dr. Mabuse movies (the flooded room in particular). Wolfgang Priess is back on hand as the title character, but, because his character mostly remains a mystery, he only appears physically for a short period of time, though his voice pops up quite a bit. This was the first Dr. Mabuse movie not directed by Fritz Lang; Harald Reinl would also helm this one’s immediate sequel, THE INVISIBLE DR. MABUSE.

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