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The House of the Devil (1896)

Le manoir du diable (original title)
| Short, Horror
With the help of a magic cauldron, Mephistopheles conjures up a variety of supernatural characters.


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A bat flies into an ancient castle and transforms itself into Mephistopheles himself. Producing a cauldron, Mephistopheles conjures up a young girl and various supernatural creatures, one of which brandishes a crucifix in an effort to force the devil-vampire to vanish. Written by Doug Sederberg <vornoff@sonic.net>

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Short | Horror

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Also Known As:

The Haunted Castle  »

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Did You Know?


Film historians argue that this is the first film depiction of a vampire. While director and actor credited his character as Mephistopheles, a legendary demon, many horror elements associated with vampires exist in the film and are exhibited by the character. These include the transformation from bat to human form, conjuring a harem of demonic brides, apparent mesmeric control, and the ability to conjure humans and creatures to serve him. Many of vampire stereotypes featured here remained tropes in early films about vampires. See more »


One of the ghosts (all of whom are wearing a white sheet over their head) cannot see where he is going, and walks right into a wall. See more »


Followed by The Devil's Laboratory (1897) See more »

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User Reviews

Impressive For The Era
15 June 2012 | by (Valhalla) – See all my reviews

Melies Is Probably One Of The Best Technicians Of Film Ever. In Comparison With Films Of The Time This Is Probably The Best Film Of The 1890's.

I Have Seen Melies' More Famous Counterpart "A Trip To The Moon", That Is More Entertaining But This Film Has Less References To Racial Slurs (The Moon Men Are Often Criticised For Being Representations Of Africans) And In This You Don't Question Anyone's Movtives (Seriously Who Takes A Nap The Minute They Get To The Moon?) I Heard This Is Considered The First Vampire Film. Simply, No. The Only Representation Of That Mythology Is Melies' Character Entering As A Bat Then Turning Human, By The Way Named Mephistopheles Who Is A Demon For Those Who Read Up On The Subject.

I Can't Really Find A Downside Besides Its Not Really As Entertaining As It Would've Been 116 Years Ago. Besides That I Thought This Movie Was Well Done Technically.

Overall I Liked It But Not As Much As "A Trip To The Moon"

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