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The Alphabet (1968)

6.8
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 4,545 users  
Reviews: 26 user | 7 critic

A woman's dark and absurdist nightmare vision comprising a continuous recitation of the alphabet and bizarre living representations of each letter.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Peggy Lynch ...
Girl
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Storyline

Against a backdrop of bizarre shapes and textures, a small organic figure gives birth to the letters of the alphabet while a mixture of children's voices and an operatic tune are singing out. The figure's head collapses causing blood to rain on a girl while she lays in her bed, resulting in the girl violently vomiting blood herself. Written by Jennifer Harrison

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3 February 2007 (Denmark)  »

Also Known As:

Alfabet  »

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1.37 : 1
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User Reviews

 
Art as horror
6 August 1999 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

Lynch's first film is a bizarre, revolting and terrifying account of a bedridden young girl apparently being tortured by the alphabet. The letters appear as weird, threatening shapes which (as in his follow-up The Grandmother) seem to take on plant form. The girl herself eventually vomits blood.

The film's meaning isn't clear, and is really of less important than the visuals, which are themselves like moving paintings. The innocence of the child's 'ABC' rhyming song is warped to give a frighteningly naive background to the horrific events.

Lynch's trademark is the expression of fear, and this short foregrounds that motif in the most disturbing way imaginable. Fans of this director should try and catch his debut, as it casts its shadow over much of his later work.


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