At the end of the sermon, the disguised Freder reveals his true identity to Maria and tells her that he must be the Mediator she has been waiting for. Fredersen, who has turned away in thought, sees none of this; Rotwang, however, sees everything. Fredersen instructs Rotwang to give the machine-man the image of Maria in order to sow discord between her and the workers. Rotwang acquiesces but has ulterior motives, intending to use the machine-man to ruin Fredersen's life. While Fredersen returns to his office, Rotwang chases Maria through a tunnel up into his house, capturing her. Freder returns to Josaphat in the apartment, but Georgy is nowhere to be found. He intended to seek out the foreman of the workers with Georgy's help, but leaves to search on his own. Immediately afterwards, Thin Man tracks down Josephat in the apartment and forces him to cooperate. As Freder wanders the worker's city, he overhears Maria's cries for help. Nearby, Rotwang attempts to force Maria to give the Machine-Man her face. Freder attempts to rescue her, but he is imprisoned in the house. Rotwang transforms the machine-man into a double of Maria. He then commands it to destroy Fredersen, his city, and his son. Downstairs, a door opens, allowing Freder to ascend a staircase. He encounters Rotwang, who tells him that Maria is not here; rather, she is with Fredersen. When Freder arrives at his father's office, he sees the machine (which now resembles Maria) embracing his father. Freder suffers a mental breakdown and collapses. During his convalescence that night, he hallucinates vividly about passages from the Book of Revelation and death's descent upon the city. Rotwang demonstrates the machine-man's abilities to Fredersen by dressing it up as an erotic dancer at the Yoshiwara (which is compared to the Whore of Babylon), where it drives the sons of the owners into homicidal fits of sexual jealousy. Josephat escapes from Thin Man by wearing a worker disguise. He finds Freder and tells him what has happened during Freder's recovery the ward: the fake Maria is creating chaos up top, and also inciting the workers to rebel. Freder arrives and tells the workers that this Maria is a fraud. The workers instead recognize him as Fredersen's son and attempt to kill him. In the fight, Georgy tries to defend Freder but is accidentally stabbed. Rotwang explains to the real, imprisoned Maria that all her work is being undone, that Fredersen intends a worker revolt to justify quashing the rebellion with force, and that the Machine-Man follows his will, not Fredersen's. Joh Fredersen happens to be eavesdropping and subdues Rotwang, allowing Maria to escape. She makes her way to the worker's city.
All the workers storm the M-Machine, but Grot keeps them at bay with impenetrable gates. Fredersen orders Grot to open the gates, allowing the workers to destroy the Heart Machine, the city's power generator. This results in a complete hydraulic breakdown. The city's reservoirs overflow and inundate the workers' city to the brim, threatening to drown the children of the workers. However, the children are saved by Maria, Freder, and Josaphat in a heroic rescue. The workers, realizing what they have done from Grot, and believing that they have killed their children, blame Maria. Under Grot's leadership, they dash to the upper city to pursue the real Maria. They run into the reveling crowds from the Yoshiwara and meet the owners' sons, led by the machine Maria. In the ensuing confusion, Maria escapes and the machine-man is tied to a stake and burned. The flames burn off the likeness of Maria and reveal the machine-man's true form to the crowd. Meanwhile, Rotwang, who has broken down completely and believes her to be Hel, corners Maria in a cathedral. Freder climbs up to the roof and battles Rotwang as Fredersen watches in horror. Rotwang falls to his death, and Freder and Maria return to the street. Freder takes his first step as mediator, overcoming the mutual reluctance of Grot and Fredersen to join hands, thus beginning a period of unity and reform.
FRITZ LANG (1922)