Synopsis by Hal Erickson
With a brilliant tip of the hat to Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, German filmmaker G.W. Pabst offers Secrets of a Soul, a convoluted tale of a chemistry professor (Caligari's Werner Krauss) haunted by inexplicable resentments. The professor doesn't really dislike his wife's cousin, who is returning after several years in India: why, then do thoughts of murder keep entering his head? The dream sequences--to which Pabst gave credence by hiring two of Freud's assistants as consultants--elaborate upon existing Freudian symbolism to the bursting point. Pabst had always been fascinated by the subconscious; here he seems intoxicated by the subject. Especially effective is Pabst's use of multiple dissolves and superimpositions, all accomplished "in the camera" without any post-production lab work. Originally titled Geheimnisse einer Seele.
cousin, dream, murder, professor