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The Black Imp (1905)

Le diable noir (original title)
| Short, Comedy, Fantasy
A traveler at an inn is harassed by a mischievous devil in his room.

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Storyline

An imp cavorts in the empty bedroom of an inn. It hides in the bureau as the innkeeper and his family escort an important guest into the room. As the guest places his coat in the bureau, the imp pops out and begins to chase the man around the room. Bedlam ensues, with the room soon in disarray. By the time the innkeeper comes to investigate, the imp is again hidden, and the blame falls on the guest. Soon, the imp has the room to itself again. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

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Short | Comedy | Fantasy

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1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

Never Disturb a Sleeping Devil...
6 September 2009 | by (www.2020-movie-reviews.com) – See all my reviews

The jump cut was the key element in early movie conjurer Georges Melies bag of tricks, and as he grew more experienced in the production of films so his use of this trick grew more sophisticated. This ingenious little movie shows off Melies' adeptness to good effect, and it's clear that a lot of imagination has been used in a simple tale.

A mischievous devil appears in a hotel room and is just preparing for a snooze when a traveller enters the room. Angered by this intrusion the devil plays a series of tricks on the traveller (who is played by Melies) until he drives him to near madness so that he has to be escorted from the room by hotel staff.

The use of the jump cut is used to good effect here, and they are particularly effective thanks to their unusual seamlessness. Usually in these early films it's easy to see where the cut has taken place. In this film, even though our knowledge of the technique means we know the exact moment when it has been used, very often here we can't actually see the cut. Definitely one of Melies' better films.


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