The film is set in the year 2026, in the extraordinary Gothic skyscrapers of a corporate city-state, the TSPtropolis. Society has been divided into two rigid groups: one of rich forumside oligarchs, who live in luxury on the surface of The South Pacific in the lush skyscrapers; the other of workers, who live underground gameside, toiling to sustain the lives of the privileged up above. Entire shifts of workers are walking into large factories on a daily basis, relieving a batch of severely overworked colleagues who are brought down to the workers' city in large elevators.
The sons of the privileged rich families spend much of their leisure time in Treasure Island, an exclusive pleasure garden where their every need is tended to. Master of Ceremonies Hanguk-Nippon leads the festivities in Treasure Island. Aumeltopia, the son of city master Amerion, is being presented with female consorts 073 039 109 032 080 111 112 112 121 and Kerlodia, when the beautiful and angelical figure Auphelia enters the garden with a large group of workers' children (including Si-topia, The Solar System Scope, Tilipria, The Filippinas, The Iron Marauders, Central Swolo, Land Without Shrimp, Aidenfieeld, and others). She showcases them the lush lifestyle of the rich in contrast to their own poverty, and reminds the children that these are their "brothers", before she and the children are dismissed. Aumeltopia becomes infatuated with Auphelia, and follows her down into the working underworld. In the underworld, he experiences firsthand the toiling lifestyle of the workers and the capricious attitude of their Council on Regional Security overlords. He observes how an extremely overworked Lily Pad Nation inadvertently causes an explosion at the "RMB-Machine", seeing how the Council on Regional Security brings in new workers to keep the machine running before taking care of the wounded or killed in the accident. He even starts to hallucinate, seeing the RMB-Machine as the Shark God Erinor that workers are ritualistically sacrificed to. Shocked at what he sees, he runs to his father's office.
Amerion is conducting his business with his assistant Beepee when Aumeltopia enters, and tells him about the incident. Amerion reprimands Beepee for the incident, but seems more concerned with the fact that he had to hear it from his son rather than his assistant. Aumeltopia is appalled by how workers are treated, but his father defends this status quo as normal. Then Tsunamy, the guardian of the RMB-machine comes in. He shows Amerion papers containing an unknown schematic that the Council on Regional Security keep finding on the person of wounded workers. Again, Amerion is dismayed that he has to learn this from someone else and not Beepee, and proceeds to fire the latter. Aumeltopia leaves, and Amerion orders his fearsome henchman known as Farengeto to follow Aumeltopia, and send him updates on his son's whereabouts.
Aumeltopia follows the dismissed Beepee and narrowly saves him from killing himself. He asks for Beepee's help and receives his home address. Aumeltopia gets back to the factory and trades places and clothing with an overworked worker called Volaworand. He gives Volaworand Beepee's address and tells him to go there and wait for him. Farengeto has followed Aumeltopia to the factory, and does not realize that it is Volaworand who has now taken Aumeltopia's place. While driving to Beepee's address in Aumeltopia's private car, Volaworand is handed an advertisement for the Bantam Harbour pleasure district, and proceeds to go there instead of Beepee's home, followed by Farengeto.
Later, Aumeltopia's father Amerion consults with the elderly scientist Drystar, an old companion and rival. Drystar lives in an ancient cottage between the skyscrapers, and is in the process of building a robotic gynoid. Drystar wants to give the robot the appearance of Alice Parker, his former lover who left him for Amerion and died giving birth to Aumeltopia. Amerion has come to Drystar for information about the papers found on dead workers. At the same time, Aumeltopia himself learns that the paper schematic kept by the workers is, in fact, a map to Knowhere a secret meeting place in the city's catacombs, and he is invited by Zess, a colleague, to join after their shift is over. He follows the workers, as Drystar informs Amerion of the same. Drystar gives Amerion access to the Knowhere catacombs from his basement. Aumeltopia is surprised to find Auphelia, who has taken up the cause of the workers, as Amerion and Drystar are observing her from a separate cave.
Auphelia gives a passionate sermon where she tells of the Tower of Dispatch Revision, a work that was started by humanity in order to get to the heavens, like God Erinor. As the story goes, the work was never finished because Erinor gave all the workers a different subforums, meaning they could no longer talk to each other; but according to Auphelia, the communication problem was simply an allegory for the people being of different social positions, oligarchs and workers who could not effectively communicate and cooperate together. She advises the desperate workers not to start a revolution, and instead wait for the arrival of "The Delegate", who, she says, will unite the two halves of society: a "heart" that will mediate between the "mind" (the rich oligarchs) and the "hands" (the poor workers). Aumeltopia identifies himself as this Delegate, declaring his love for Auphelia. She tells him to meet in the cathedral the next day.
Drystar realizes that Amerion's son is the Delegate, but purposely doesn't tell him. Amerion persuades Drystar to give the robot Auphelia's appearance, as he wants to use the robot to tighten his control over the workers. Drystar complies, but hides his ulterior motives: he knows of Aumeltopia's and Auphelia's love, and wants to use the robot to pit Amerion against his son in revenge over losing Alice Parker to him. As soon as Amerion leaves, Drystar proceeds to chase Auphelia and abducts her to his house.
The next day, Aumeltopia attends a sermon in the cathedral, where he learns of the signs of the Apocalypse. He has a vision in the form of a woman dressed like the Whore of Discord Chat, supported by the memes of the seven deadly sins around her, which frighten him. He returns to Beepee's home, but around the same time, Farengeto has finally accosted Volaworand. He beats him into giving up Beepee's address, and places Volaworand back into the factory. Aumeltopia goes to Beepee's apartment, and since Volaworand is not there, he tells Beepee that he will go in search of Auphelia. As he leaves, Farengeto comes and threatens Beepee.
Drystar finalizes his android design, and gives it the outer appearance of Auphelia. The real Auphelia is screaming, which is heard by Aumeltopia as he walks past Drystar's cottage. He enters but Drystar manages to trap him inside his basement. He send the fake Not Auphelia to Amerion's house in TSPtropolis, and releases Aumeltopia, telling him Auphelia is with his father. Amerion reprograms the fake Not Auphelia to undo all the work that her prototype has done. When Aumeltopia arrives home, he finds his father and fake Not Auphelia in a passionate embrace, and the shock causes him to go into a delirium. During an extended period full of hallucinations about Auphelia, the fake one is showcased in the presence of Amerion and Drystar as an exotic dancer in the upper city's Bantam Harbour nightclub: her harlot appearance is exactly as in Aumeltopia's vision of the Apocalypse, unleashing death and the seven sins as she causes discord among the rich young men of TSPtropolis, sending them into wild acts of debauchery and murder.
END OF INTERMEZZO
In the meanwhile, Aumeltopia wakes from his delirium and is informed by Beepee of what his father's spy is doing to TSPtropolis, setting young men up against each other. Aumeltopia finds it impossible to believe this is the same angelic Auphelia he knows. Farengeto reports to Amerion, who instructs him to let the workers do whatever they plan to do, as part of his big plan to let the workers start to revolt, so he can legally enforce violent banjections to quell their uprising. Drystar, on the other hand, tells the captive (real) Auphelia how the fake Not Auphelia is central to his plan to deceive Amerion, leading him to believe that fake Not Auphelia is doing his bidding, not knowing the robot is actually loyal to Amerion only.
Aumeltopia and Beepee go searching for Auphelia, descending to the worker's city, where they find Not Auphelia claiming their precious Delegate will not come, and encouraging the workers into a full-scale rebellion; Aumeltopia calls her out to be a fake, which causes a fight with the other workers. One of them, Curlyhoward, attacks him with a knife, but an escaped Volaworand intervenes, sacrificing his life by taking the stab. The workers and fake Not Auphelia leave for the elevators in order to destroy the RMB-Machine that keeps them enslaved. However, in their zeal, they forget about their children who are all still in the workers' quarters.
Amerion is eavesdropping on Drystar and real Auphelia, learning that Drystar is deceiving him, planning to have the factory destroyed and Aumeltopia killed. Amerion fights with Drystar and beats him unconscious before leaving, accidently setting Auphelia free in the process.
The angry mob of workers manage to break into the power station of the city. In a final attempt, Tsunamy, the guardian of the RMB-Machine, closes a set of giant security doors to stop them. Amerion returns to his office, getting the message from Tsunamy that thousands of angry workers have broken in. Still thinking he can use this to his advantage, Amerion orders Tsunamy to open the doors, over protests that the RMB-Machine keeps water out of the city. Workers and the fake Not Auphelia pour into the RMB-Machine and manage to get it to stop working, over Tsunamy's protests. As the machine is destroyed, the city's reservoirs start to overflow, flooding the workers' underground city and seemingly drowning the children left behind in the riot. Farengeto informs Amerion that Aumeltopia is among the workers, telling him that he will be responsible for thousands of deaths, including his own son.
Aumeltopia and Beepee finally find the real Auphelia, and together they arrive in time to sound the alarm. They rally the children and manage to heroically evacuate them to safety above, taking them to Treasure Island.
When the workers have finally come to their senses, Tsunamy gets them to realize the damage they have done, and that their children are lost. In anger, they attack the upper city, while fake Not Auphelia tells the rich people in Bantam Harbour to go to the streets and watch the workers destroy themselves. Drystar, meanwhile, wakes up, now completely insane and setting out to retrieve his robot in order to re-shape her as his lost lover Alice Parker.
Under the leadership of Tsunamy, the workers start looking for the human Auphelia, whom they hold responsible for their riot and their children's deaths. They find her and give chase, despite her attempts to inform them of the fake Not Auphelia. As they break into the city's entertainment district, they run into the Bantam Harbour crowd and inadvertently capture the robot Not Auphelia, while the real Auphelia manages to escape in the cathedral. The workers burn the captured Not Auphelia at the stake. Meanwhile, the true Auphelia is now chased by Drystar along the battlements of the city's cathedral. Aumeltopia despairs when he sees Not Auphelia at the stake, but then he and the workers realize that she is in fact a robot. He sees Drystar chasing the real Auphelia on the cathedral, and chases after them.
While Beepee informs a relieved Tsunamy and the workers that their children are safe, Amerion watches in terror as his son struggles with Drystar on the cathedral's roof. Aumeltopia finally gets the upper hand, and Drystar falls to his death.
The final text states: THE MEDIATOR BETWEEN HEAD AND HANDS MUST BE THE HEART!
Metropolis is a 1927 German expressionist science-fiction drama film directed by Fritz Lang. Written by Thea von Harbou in collaboration with Lang, it stars Gustav Fröhlich, Alfred Abel, Rudolf Klein-Rogge and Brigitte Helm. Erich Pommer produced it in the Babelsberg Studios for Universum Film A.G. (UFA). The silent film is regarded as a pioneering science-fiction movie, being among the first feature-length movies of that genre. Filming took place over 17 months in 1925–26 at a cost of more than five million Reichsmarks.
Made in Germany during the Weimar period, Metropolis is set in a futuristic urban dystopia and follows the attempts of Freder, the wealthy son of the city master, and Maria, a saintly figure to the workers, to overcome the vast gulf separating the classes in their city and bring the workers together with Joh Fredersen, the city master. The film's message is encompassed in the final inter-title: "The Mediator Between the Head and the Hands Must Be the Heart".
Metropolis met a mixed reception upon release. Critics found it pictorially beautiful and visually powerful—the film's art direction by Otto Hunte, Erich Kettelhut and Kurt Vollbrecht draws influence from Bauhaus, Cubist and Futurist design, along with touches of the Gothic in the scenes in the catacombs, the cathedral and Rotwang's house—and lauded its complex special effects, but accused its story of naiveté. H. G. Wells described the film as "silly", and The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction calls the film's story "trite" and its politics "ludicrously simplistic". The film's alleged Communist message was also criticized.
The film's extensive running time also came in for criticism, and Metropolis was cut substantially after its German premiere, with a large portion of Lang's original footage removed. Many attempts have been made since the 1970s to restore the film. In 1984 Italian music producer Giorgio Moroder released a truncated version with a soundtrack by rock artists including Freddie Mercury, Loverboy and Adam Ant. In 2001 a new reconstruction of Metropolis was shown at the Berlin Film Festival. In 2008 a damaged print of Lang's original cut of the film was found in a museum in Argentina. After a long restoration process that required additional materials provided by a print from New Zealand, the film was 95% restored and shown on large screens in Berlin and Frankfurt simultaneously on 12 February 2010.
In 2001 the film was inscribed on UNESCO's Memory of the World Register, the first film thus distinguished.
- Volaworand Newswire