7.1/10
291
6 user 7 critic

The Living Dead Man (1926)

Feu Mathias Pascal (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama | 12 February 1926 (France)
Mathias Pascal, only son of a once rich family, marries beautiful Romilde, who has a terrible mother-in-law. She controls her daughter, and soon his home life becomes a nightmare, as well ... See full summary »

Director:

Marcel L'Herbier

Writers:

Marcel L'Herbier (scenario), Luigi Pirandello (play)
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Cast

Cast overview:
Ivan Mozzhukhin ... Mathias Pascal (as Ivan Mosjoukine)
Marcelle Pradot Marcelle Pradot ... Romilde Pascal
Lois Moran ... Adrienne Paleari
Marthe Mellot Marthe Mellot ... Mme Pascal, la mère de Mathias
Pauline Carton ... Tante Scholastique
Irma Perrot Irma Perrot ... Sylvia Caporale
Mireille Barsac Mireille Barsac ... Veuve Pescatore (as M. Barsac)
Michel Simon ... Jérôme Pomino
Isaure Douvan Isaure Douvan ... Batta Maldagna
Pierre Batcheff ... Scipion
Georges Térof Georges Térof ... L'amoureux du 12, un joueur
Philippe Hériat Philippe Hériat ... L'aide assesseur
Jean Hervé Jean Hervé ... Chev Terence Papiano
Solange Sicard Solange Sicard ... Olive Mesmi
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Storyline

Mathias Pascal, only son of a once rich family, marries beautiful Romilde, who has a terrible mother-in-law. She controls her daughter, and soon his home life becomes a nightmare, as well as his job as assistant librarian in his home town. His only moments of lights are his mother and his baby, but both die on the same day. Shocked he leaves his hometown and gets to Monte Carlo, where he wins a fortune at the Casino. Returning home, he reads his own obituary in a paper. They have found a corpse in a creek and connected it with his disappearance. Mathias, noticing that he now is free from all ties to his old live, decides to start a new one, and goes to Rome, where he rents a room in a pension full of fake spiritualists who are controlling the owner. The chief of the gang, Terence, wants to marry the owner's daughter Adrienne, and has convinced her father to give her to him, with no regards of Adrienne's feelings, who is in love with and loved by Mathias. When Terence steals Mathias ... Written by Stephan Eichenberg <eichenbe@fak-cbg.tu-muenchen.de>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated
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Details

Country:

France

Language:

French

Release Date:

12 February 1926 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Salig Mathias Pascal See more »

Filming Locations:

Monte Carlo, Monaco See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Silent

Color:

Black and White (tinted)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Title Card: Freedom has something bitter about it.
See more »

Connections

Version of Le due vite di Mattia Pascal (1985) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Only for the hardcore (and very patient) silent film buff
24 December 2017 | by gbill-74877See all my reviews

Oof. At 3 hours, this film is far too long for its pace, which plods along slowly in the first half especially. There are entire scenes which are unnecessary, starting with the very first, which has Pascal's mother being taken advantage in selling her estate, which is a waste of about 15 minutes. Another example is a scene of mice and cats in the library, which is just silly. These things take away from and delay considerably the main story - Mathias Pascal's feeling of claustrophobia in his marriage leading him to 'run away from it all', helped along by the belief others have that he's died (hence 'The Late Mathias Pascal').

The film occasionally feels like an experimental project, with attempts to dabble in humor, romance, and surrealism at various points, but missing holistic vision. There are certainly some nice moments. I loved seeing Pascal in Rome at various sites (the Spanish Steps, Trevi Fountain, and Ponte Sant'Angelo among others), the gambling scenes in Monte Carlo, and some of the outdoor scenes, such as those along the train tracks. Director Marcel L'Herbier utilizes techniques such as overlays and slow motion which were 'state of the art' at the time. Unfortunately there as many bad examples of filmmaking. Far too often we see tight shots of Ivan Mozzhukhin's face, who is reasonably good in the role, but has limited range, so we see the same dramatic expression over and over. The editing was also poor, so that we see moments repeated slightly or not fit together seamlessly. Only for the hardcore (and very patient) silent film buff.


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