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Neues vom Hexer

Again the Ringer

West Germany 1965
produced by
Horst Wendlandt, Fritz Klotsch (executive) for Rialto
directed by Alfred Vohrer
starring Heinz Drache, Barbara Rütting, Brigitte Horney, Margot Trooger, Siegfried Schürenberg, Klaus Kinski, Robert Hoffmann, Karl John, Hubert von Meyerinck, Heinz Spitzner, Kurt Waitzmann, Lia Eibenschütz, Teddy Naumann, Gisela Hahn, Lu Säuberlich, Eddi Arent, René Deltgen, Wilhelm Vorwerg, Albert Bessler, Ester Olsen, Lotte Olsen, Alfred Vohrer, Michael Chevalier
screenplay by Herbert Reinecker, based on the novel by Edgar Wallace, music by Peter Thomas

Rialto's Edgar Wallace cycle, Edgar Wallace made in Germany, The Ringer, Sir John (Siegfried Schürenberg)

review by
Mike Haberfelner

Available on DVD !

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Old Lord Curtain (Wilhelm Vorwerg) is killed, and it appears to be a dastardly deed of the Ringer (René Deltgen) - why else would he leave his card at the scene of the crime, right? Of course, we, the audience, know it really was Archie Moore (Robert Hoffmann), Curtain's nephew, aided by Curtain's own butler Edwards (Klaus Kinski). But Scotland Yard chief Sir John (Siegfried Schürenberg) is so sure of it that he has Inspector Wesby (Heinz Drache) pulled from his flight to Australia to help investigate. Meanwhile, back in Australia, the real Ringer is persuaded by his right hand man Finch (Eddi Arent) to return to London to investigate and clear his name. And it's not long before the Ringer can establish that Archie had indeed killed his uncle and provided himself with an alibi by playing a tape of the deadly shot a few minutes later, when his aunts Lady Curtain (Lia Eibenschütz) and Lady Aston (Brigitte Horney) can both verify his whereabouts. Upon having been found out, Archie makes a getaway - but can soon be found, killed. Likewise, Lady Curtain is killed, which prompts Wesby to investigate the remaining members of the Curtain family, Lady Aston, little one-armed Charles (Teddy Naumann) and the "black sheep" of the family Margie (Barbara Rütting) - not that he gets very far. Meanwhile, the Ringer offers the police his cooperation if his charges are suspended for the duration of the investigation. Since Scotland Yard isn't getting anywhere fast, Sir John agrees. Meanwhile, more suspects die, an attempt is made to abduct Charles, and Margie is shot at - and finally, Lady Aston comes clear and tells of Lord Curtain's brother Philip (Alfred Vohrer), her former fiancé who has obviously been wrongly accused of something, has disappeared, but now kills his way through the family to inherit the family fortune. In the finale, young Charles is kidnapped again and thrown to the tigers (!) - but proves to be an immensely accomplished tiger tamer (!!!), taking care of a whole pack of angry tigers in no time at all. Of course, Philip's captured in the end, and everything ends well for all but the ringer, who's arrested once the case is closed ...

 

Ok, at the very last when the little boy tames all these tigers and nobody bats an eye that he can even do that, any kind of narrative logic is thrown out of the window - but narrative logic was never a strong point of the German Edgar Wallace mysteries (at least in part owed to the source material of course), as these films are much more about thrills and adventure than actual police work, relying more on chases and shoot-outs, scares and comical interludes, surprise villains and larger than life ideas than what one might call realism - and that's really the fun of the series as a whole, and this movie is a perfect example of that: None of this makes much sense, key plot points are not worked towards but pulled out of a hat, criminal investigations feel more like snappy patter than serious questioning, and coincidence plays too big a role in the proceedings. And in a "what the fuck?" way, this film is actually lots of fun - as long as you don't expect an actually serious murder mystery of course.

 

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review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Robots and rats,
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shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
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On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD