Film 22 in the “1001 films to see before you die” challenge is 1915’s Les Vampires. A French silent film. Before anyone asks, and I did note this in my write-up that I only watched episode one to save on time as I really didn’t fancy watching all 339 minutes (5 Hours 39 Minutes). I lost interest very easily while watching getting sidetracked. Episode One was entitled “The Severed Head” and there was a severed head at the end of the episode so they kinda spoiled the surprise from the title alone. Only problem that I can find while watching all these silence films as of late is that they can be very dull if there isn’t anything interesting happening on the screen. I usually spend most of the time making up dialogue during my viewing of silent films. Louis Feulliade would become a highly prolific director, with over 700 films to his name! If you’ve seen this, then let me know what you thought of the film. Here’s what I had to say while watching 1915’s “Les Vampires”
Film – Les Vampires
Year – 1915
Director – Louis Feuillade
Staring – Musidora, Edouard Mathe, Marcel Levesque
IMDb Rating – 6.7/10
My Rating – 5.9/10
NOTE – This in in 5 episodes, I’m only watching episode One
Episode one – The Severed Head
Reading… in French!
Men meet in a office
“My God! My draws empty”
“The Vampires Folder has been stolen”
All of these men have terrible hair
Why does the servant have it on him?
That man’s mustache is clearly stuck on
“Don’t arrest me! I have 3 kids to feed”
The servant hands a letter saying his kids are gonna be kicked out of the nursing home if he doens’t have the money
I assume the man said he’d help the servant – I can’t tell! EVERYTHING IS IN FRENCH AND I DON’T KNOW ANY FRENCH!
“The Boss wants you”
He heads off to see the boss… and his mustache
That is an epic mustache
Vampires have been spotted roaming the streets of Paris and have killed someone
“I’m on the case”
He heads off to meet his mum who is packing his suitcase
Time for memories
Why would they show the doctor’s address – Will this be relevant later?
In Sologne – Sure it’s Cologne but I’ll go with the movie
More reading in a newspaper
Someone’s bought his house without him knowing – Thieving bastards!
Aparrently the person who bought his house is the man looking for vampires
This film claims all Americans are rich
He’s named Phillipe – Took me 10 minutes to find that out
The record for the film not telling me the main characters name is “First Encounters of the Third Kind” which took over one hour for me to find that out!
That meeting didn’t last long
Phillipe got turned down my the press so he visits Doctor Nox
Back with the Rich American
Phillipe arrives and says hello… sorry Bonjeur
Is everyone’s facial hair glued on
“Sinister band of Vampires” – All I get when I type Vampire bands in Google are Vampire Weekend and Type O Negative
Can you tell I’ve lost interest in this film?
That’s a giant ring!
“Come on! It’s only blood”
“Well alright then. It’s not like any vampires will come and get me”
Phillipe can’t sleep – I know that feeling
The Vampires left him a note in his room… but the door was locked
How did they get in?
Through the cat flap in the secret painting!
“Must… Get… Some. Sle… ZZZZzzzz”
The Vampires break into the American’s room… and turn on the lampshades
Oh wait! It’s a thief!
Not a very good one if he needs to which on lights
That would make it easier for people to identify him
The thief then appears in the secret painting cat flap thing
The next morning
Philippe and Doctor Nox have a chat in the garden
Ok the giant ring was actually a cigarette case
Why does a cigarette case need diamonds on it?
The American shouts from the window that she’s been robbed
“The thief gave himself away by running away” – No he did that already by turning on the lights
“TAXI! The press”
“Not the Coba Cabana?!”
“No time” Move it”
At the press
Phillipe tells them about what happened last night
Why does he have the cigarette case?
Why is this cigarette case important?
I really couldn’t care now about the plot
From his actions I think he wants to grab someone and turn them inside out
Phillipe then hides as American and Doctor Nox arrive
They tell the press what happened and they are quickly shown the door
“Guard, make sure they or anyone else enters the room even if I come and get them”
They all leave
Is it a requirement for actors to have canes/walking sticks on them
They head to the house and investigate
Swear I saw that same shot from earlier
So by investigating, they enter a room, stand in a huddle, chat then leave
Phillipe shows them the secret cat flap thingy to find a box inside of it
In the box is a severed head – That’s the title of the episode!
It’s Inspector Durtal’s head!!!
Let’s just accuse the gardener of the murder since he wasn’t around last night
“Take it to the morgue”
Back at the press
“Did they leave?”
“I don’t know! I’m outside the room!”
They open the room to find Amerian dead and Doctor Nox has disappeared!
“How did they get in?”
“Through the fireplace?”
“A note from Grand Vampire”
A man on a roof
Is it a vampire?
To me, he looks like he’s on the roof of a greenhouse
The vampire scales a drainpipe and climbs down to the floor and runs away