Hundred Days (Hundert Tage) Werner Krauss 1935 DVD
"One of the greatest Napoleonic pictures ever made. Vive l'Empereur!"
For many years it was considered lost. Until now! Digitally Remastered from 35mm print.
1815. Napoleon Bonaparte, who had abdicated his throne, left the island of Elba (to which he had been exiled) with 1,000 troops to conquer Europe again. Thus began the "rule of the hundred days", which culminated in the emperor's defeat at Waterloo and his final exile on the island of St. Helena. Italian dictator Benito Mussolini conceived the idea of writing a drama about Napoleon's last days;, his collaborator, playwright Giovacchino Forzano, turned the idea into a play in 1930, using dialogue supplied by Il Duce. In 1934, Germany and Italy joined forces to bring the play to the screen, in a German version directed by Franz Wenzler and supervised by Dr. Ernst Hanfstaengl, the Führer's old friend and foreign press chief, and a simultaneously shot Italian version with an Italian cast, directed by Forzano.
Hundert Tage (Hundred Days), filmed in Italy and on the island of Elba during the autumn of 1934, is one of the most important pictures ever made about Napoleon-overshadowed perhaps only by Abel Gance's 1927 masterpiece. The film gave audiences a rousing set-piece that the play could never provide: the wonderfully orchestrated Battle of Waterloo. Gustaf Gründgens is effective as the unctuous Paris Police Minister, Joseph Fouché, but it is Werner Krauss-Dr. Caligari himself-who had already portrayed Napoleon on film in 1929 and on stage in 1930, whose moving performance as the heroic-tragic leader makes the picture. Krauss was said to have been coached on how to portray Napoleon by Mussolini himself. Hundert Tage was released in March 1935 to great acclaim, but, because of its fascist "cult of the leader" ideology and its use of history to legitimize current statecraft, the film simply disappeared after the end of the Second World War. For many years it was considered lost. Until now.
Adapted from the play by Giovacchino Forzano and Benito Mussolini. Directed by Franz Wenzler. Starring Werner Krauss, Gustaf Gründgens.
Germany-Italy, 1935, B&W, 86 Minutes. German dialogue, English subtitles.
- Historical Background Slideshow: Werner Krauss and Napoleon
- Original Promotional Materials Slideshows:
Illustrierter Film Kurier with English Translations; Posters, Photos & Ads
NTSC Region 0 encoding (Entire World)