Asphalt (1929 film)

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ASPHALT orig colour.jpg
Directed by Joe May
Produced by Erich Pommer
Written by Hans Szekely
Starring Gustav Fröhlich
Else Heller
Albert Steinruck
Betty Amann
Cinematography Günther Rittau
Distributed by Universum Film AG
Release dates
  • March 11, 1929 (1929-03-11) (Germany)
Running time 93 min
Country Weimar Republic
Language Silent film
German intertitles

Asphalt (1929) is a German silent film. The film was one of the last silent films released in Germany as the world was entering the era of sound film.



Asphalt was made by UFA; a German studio, and produced by the Erich Pommer who was responsible for producing several films by directors including Fritz Lang's Der müde Tod (1921), Dr. Mabuse, der Spieler (1922), Die Nibelungen (1924), Metropolis (1927), and Spione (1928), F. W. Murnau's The Last Laugh (1924), Faust (1926), Tartüff (1927), and other popular films of the era including The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1920) and Varieté (1925).

Director Joe May co-wrote the script. The sets were designed by Erich Kettelhut who also worked on Dr. Mabuse, der Spieler, Metropolis, Berlin: Symphony of a Great City, with the uncredited assistance of Robert Herlth (Der müde Tod, Der letzte Mann, Tartüff, Faust) and Walter Röhrig (Das Cabinet des Dr. Caligari, Tartüff, Faust). The cinematographer was Günther Rittau (Die Nibelungen, Metropolis, Der blaue Engel).


Asphalt was premiered on March 11, 1929 at Berlin's prestigious Ufa-Palast am Zoo. Critics noted the cheap, pulp-fiction nature of the plot but also praised May’s skill and cinematography and editing.

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