At the Opera of Paris, a mysterious phantom threatens a famous lyric singer, Carlotta and thus forces her to give up her role (Marguerite in Faust) for unknown Christine Daae. Christine meets this phantom (a masked man) in the catacombs, where he lives. What's his goal ? What's his secret ?Written by
The Phantom's makeup was designed to resemble a skull. Lon Chaney attached a strip of fish skin (a thin, translucent material) to his nostrils with spirit gum, pulled it back until he got the tilt he wanted, then attached the other end of the fish skin under his bald cap. For some shots, a wire-and-rubber device was used, and according to cameraman Charles Van Enger it cut into Chaney's nose and caused a good deal of bleeding. Cheeks were built up using a combination of cotton and collodion. Ears were glued back and the rest was greasepaint shaded in the proper areas of the face. The sight was said to have caused some patrons at the premiere to faint. See more »
When Christine first interprets the role of "Marguerite" in "Faust", we see her in the costume used for the ending of Act 5 of "Faust" (the finale of the opera). However, when Raoul comes around to her dressing room, after the opera has finished, we find Christine in the braided wig and outfit worn during "The Jewel Song" which is in Act 3 of the opera. See more »
Former Opera House Owner:
[to new Opera House Owners]
It is barely possible you may hear of a ghost, a Phantom of the Opera!
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In 1925 (and for many years afterwards), credits used to appear at the beginning of movies. In "The Phantom of the Opera", the credits do appear at the beginning and are also repeated at the end, preceded by the following caption: "This is repeated at the request of picture patrons who desire to check the names of performers whose work has pleased them." See more »
The original cut featured extra scenes between Christine and Raoul (one just after the Phantom starts visiting her and an epilogue, both in a garden), and much of the business between the owners of the opera house changing hands and the first few murders are sequences that appear to have been switched for the 1929 recut. See more »
One of the most eminent horror films ever made and perhaps even the most famous silent horror movie from that time. Lon Chaney starred in over 150 films (most of them silent ones) but he'll always be remembered best for his personification of Erik, the Phantom. And justified! Even though this role was played by many respectable actors afterwards (like Claude Rains, Herbert Lom and Robert Englund) Lon Chaney is and remains the one and only Phantom of the Opera. The film itself is depressing and dark, with terrific photography and settings. Deep down the catacombs of the Parisian Opera building, the phantom reigns in forgotten dungeons and underground lakes. After all these years of dwelling in the opera, he has fallen in love with the unsuccessful singer, Christine. He helps her career a little and threatens to kill the prominent singer Carlotta if she doesn't hand over the her role in Faust to Christine. The until then unknown singer is thankful and meets her `master' in the catacombs. Her appreciation soon turns into fear when she finds out her benefactor is the horribly scarred Phantom of the Opera. The biggest difference between this first version and the later remakes lies in the roots of the Phantom. Here, Erik is said to be an escaped madman whereas he merely only was a hurt romanticist in later versions. His deformed appearance isn't explained and neither is shown how he falls for the beautiful, shy Christine.
At least 3 sequences in the 1925 Phantom of the Opera are legendary and still astonishing after almost 80 years. The masked bal, which the Phantoms attends as the `Red Death' is an outstanding horror sequence and truly atmospheric. The grimaces of Chaney seem to look right through the other partygoers and his search for Christine is relentless. Immediately after this scene, the crew moves to the roof of the Opera building and Chaney takes place on top of the Apollo statue. A breathtaking piece of early cinema that stands the test of time like no other. The climax of Phantom of the Opera is an extended series of chasings and battues, resulting in the dramatic (and gruesome) death of our protagonist. Rupert Julian's classic silent has got everything! An actor capable of carrying the toughest role ever written, beautiful scenery, real-life drama, sentiment and romance. And last but not least an unbearable tension Throughout the entire film, you're looking at it with your eyes wide open.
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