6.0/10
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House of Cards (1947)

In this film without sound, a man awakes disheveled in a rooming house. He stares out the window seeing children playing and a well-dressed man sitting on a chair in the middle of the ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview:
Crane Whitley
Gail Roberts
Harriette Ann Gray ...
(as Ann Gray Harriet)
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Storyline

In this film without sound, a man awakes disheveled in a rooming house. He stares out the window seeing children playing and a well-dressed man sitting on a chair in the middle of the street reading a newspaper and looking up at him. A headline describes the murder of a child. The disheveled man, whose face expresses fear and despair, leaves, going through the city, alarmed when anyone looks at him. A woman invites him to look through a public telescope. He does then keeps going. He climbs a hill. Two fencers appear; so does a jester. Is flight fruitless? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

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16 March 1966 (USA)  »

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1.37 : 1
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21 July 2011 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

In this film without sound, a man awakes disheveled in a rooming house. He stares out the window seeing...

Some reviews have compared this film to "The Cabinet of Doctor Caligari", which I frankly just do not see. Maybe a hint here or there, but it is not obvious. Also, this film being from 1947 makes it a bit late on the scene to emulate Caligari... plenty of other films had tested the boundaries of German expressionism. This one does not come close to any of those films, at least not in that way.

I find a much more apt comparison would be to the noir films or Hitchcock. The dark shadows, the looming nether of the world beyond the protagonist... While not as good as "The Third Man", I find that this is a much closer approximation than Caligari... but I am by no means an expert on 1940s film.

What will stand out in my mind about this film is the most terrifying use of a ballet dancer ever put to celluloid. I was quite literally creeped out by this character, and whatever his significance (I cannot even begin to guess), he did a job well done if his goal was to make me fear him.


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