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A legendary seven-hour silent crime serial in ten episodes. "Les Vampires" follows the exploits of a brazen and resourceful band of arch-criminals who rob the rich, transfix the elite of France, and almost elude the obsessive pursuit of crusading journalist Phillipe Guerande and his sidekick Mazamette. A series of Grand Vampires with names such as Satanas and Venomous share the irresistible Irma Vep (an anagram of "vampire") as strategist and mistress. Sometimes seductively garbed in a black body stocking and a black hood, sometimes disguised as a boy or hidden in plain view as a maid, stenographer or bourgeois spinster, feared and desired by both her cohorts and stalkers, Irma is perhaps the first liberated screen woman. Shot off-the-cuff by writer-director Louis Feuillade in the streets and interiors of 1915 Paris, "Les Vampires" was banned by the Paris police for glorifying crime. A smash hit when finally released, and for fifty years celebrated as a masterpiece of French cinema, "Les Vampires" is complete and restored, with English titles and inserts, tints and an evocative orchestral score.
This legendary seven-hour silent French serial, one of the earliest and most original gangster films, combines realism and fantasy. Written and directed by Louis Feuillade, Les Vampires concerns an intrepid reporter's pursuit of a strange gang of jewel thieves terrorizing Paris. The gang ambitiously seeks political, psychological, and sexual domination of the city's social elite, with the seductive Irma Vep (an anagram of "vampire") as its brazen leader. While slow going at first, the 10-part serial becomes more and more fascinating with each episode, thanks in large part to the alluring Musidora as Irma Vep. Because of her many guises and frightful charms, she truly becomes a vampire of sorts. Feuillade achieves a subversive, nightmarish atmosphere amid the everyday goings-on of the city. Filmed on the streets and back alleys of World War I Paris, the 1915 picture was a huge commercial success, though temporarily banned by Paris's chief of police for glamorizing crime. --Bill Desowitz --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
While I have never received a DVD from Amazon (.de, .fr, .jp, c.o.uk, or .ca) that had a tag ON the DVD - in 10 years of buying from amazon, I bought this twice, once for a friend... Read morePublished on March 13 2009 by I. Lembcke
This is just to second the previous reviewer. My DVD has the
&#$%@^% sensor tag on it as well. I can't seem to get the glue off. Read more
I saw parts of this on TCM,but missed a few chapters.
This is one of the best movies I've seen.It's a classic. Read more
OK, this DVD is a bit expensive; nor is it admittedly for everyone, but for those who are willing to take a risk will find that great cinema dates much earlier than they ever... Read morePublished on April 21 2002 by E. Dolnack
Some directors have to see this work. You don't need special
effects and fancy things to achive a good film. Emotion, good
scenario and a lot of personal feeling. Read more
love the films and great to see them restored so well, am very happy with this purchase except... in one episode the picture broke up slightly 3 times into the blocky terror of all... Read morePublished on Feb. 28 2002 by SockPuppetTheatre
I was leery about buying this movie because it's ... expensive, but let me assure all of you that it is worth the price! Read morePublished on Sept. 10 2001 by M. Surani
This is a treat indeed! Not reviewing the film (which is really good) I would like to discuss the technical data. The transfer is quite good, although not the best possible (i.e. Read morePublished on Feb. 20 2001 by Mart Sander