A traveler stays the night at a rural inn, but gets no rest as he is tormented by various spectres and mysterious happenings. The food on the table prepares itself, his clothes leave the ...
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George S. Fleming,
Edwin S. Porter
James H. White
A traveler stays the night at a rural inn, but gets no rest as he is tormented by various spectres and mysterious happenings. The food on the table prepares itself, his clothes leave the room on their own and the room seems to tumble end over end. Several hooded figures dance around his bed, and a demon finally tears away one wall and seizes him. Written by
Well, I have to say that among so many silent supernatural horror short films I've seen recently, this is another outstanding addition I recommend, and not exactly for its originality (remember that Méliès had already experimented with the genre before, and even the director J. Stuart Blackton here also aimed to impress rather than cause fear), but for its strong way to show incredible special effects and develop a fast-paced, yet thoroughly engaging story.
A traveler arriving to a haunted hotel and staying while finding himself haunted by spirits in his room. He tries to avoid these "visions" and stay calm, probably thinking everything is in his head, possibly due to the long way he may have come. But he then learns things may not be what they seem, until concluding in a somewhat dark note (I can easily imagine people back then being freaked out by that ending, and I even dare to say that a couple of moments and characters are still creepy nowadays).
The atmosphere and ambient of the house and the room are well delivered. While on the other hand, the make-up for the main character was very good but a little distracting: I didn't get why he had a big pointy nose, unless they wanted him to be as creepy-looking as the ghosts and monsters in the house.
Great production values and visual style, with a fantastic use of stop motion (pay attention to the breakfast scene, and that subsequent scary miniature figure) and trick photography effects (the freaky dancing ghosts scene), and atmospheres makes for another great experience by J. Stuart Blackton that makes me appreciate the silent era of film a little bit more.
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