First of all, I did not really enjoy the movie. It dragged. There were a good thirty minutes that easily could have been left out, with little detriment to the film. Being a re-imagining of the tale of Faustus, the film enters that dangerous territory of hit-or-miss. And for me, it missed; I prefer the more succinct original version. Though to be fair to the film, the ending was sufficiently German. Happy endings are for schwächlinge.
That aside, the scene I’m analysing is the Villa Wedding Scene, wherein Hendrick is married to some German whose name I never caught. I apologise. I particularly enjoyed the opening, establishing shot, that shows the Villa behind a set of iron bars. Obvious imagery, Hendrick living in a gilded cage, nonetheless effective. The camerawork throughout the scene, leading up to the arrival of the general, is highly reminiscent of traditional love scenes: the bride and groom walking down the stairs, the tracking shots, people watching quietly. It serves as a ironic reminder of how twisted Hendrick’s life is. He isn’t marrying for love, but marrying because the Nazi party, perhaps subtly, told him to.
The final reminder that the Nazi party is truly in charge is the arrival of the General. On a night that should be all about the bride, (and I guess the groom) all activities stop for the general. All eyes are on him, and he even just strolls into their home, gives his approval, without being prompted, and departs.
The sound in the scene was deceptively extra-diegetic. We are shown shots of a band, but the instrumentation in the band did not even remotely match the music we were hearing. In the middle of a muted trumpet solo, the alto sax player was hamming it up. Definitely faking it. Film was terrible about that.