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Allan has a hard time finding the Usher's house, which is known to be cursed... But he is a personal friend of Roderick Usher, who lives with his sick wife Madeline and a doctor. Roderick is painting a portrait of Madeline, but every pose exhausts her. Allan worries more and more... Written by
Memorable Adaptation With Impressive Visuals & Atmosphere
This memorable adaptation of Edgar Allan Poe's "The Fall of the House of Usher" is particularly impressive in its use of visuals and in the macabre, disorienting atmosphere that it creates, which fits in well with the story. Jean Epstein made some rather significant changes to the story, but as a movie it all works very well.
The story changes the central relationship between Roderick and Madeline, and in so doing discards some of Poe's themes, but adds some new ones of its own. Likewise there are other differences as the story unfolds, but Epstein had his own consistent conception of the possibilities in the story, so that it's neither better nor worse than Poe's idea, just different - they are both creative and fascinating conceptions in their own way.
The settings and visual effects are very effective in establishing the atmosphere, and in setting off some of the themes of the story. Some of them, such as the enormous array of flickering candles by which Roderick works, are used as recurring images, with surprisingly haunting results. The pace with which the images come at the viewer is also used as part of the effect. It's quite a distinctive accomplishment, and it's a movie that you won't forget for a while.
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