The Ark

Whatever floats your boat...

This is a genuinely unsettling little movie. It fits roughly in with Fright Month theme, and also I wanted to see if I could figure out how to embed something in the blog section since Amy was asking.

It was made in 1908 (for Vitagraph Studios--the same studio that produced "Princess Nicotine") and the very ending is missing.

Views: 99

Comment by Geoff on October 10, 2014 at 10:58am

Amy, when you add a blog a little menu will appear--but you may have to wait for 30 seconds--that includes the little film strip icon we use when embedding videos normally.

Comment by ThatGirl on October 10, 2014 at 11:03am

Creepy Good Stuff and with a moral to the story, even better. Quite good film quality considering how much this little jewel had to be manipulated to get to digital format.

Reminds me of a thievin' little mantra punk kids would sing back in Brooklyn

3-6-9 , Everything Is Mine!

Comment by Geoff on October 10, 2014 at 11:12am

This movie really scared me when I was a little kid:

Comment by SydTheSkeptic on October 10, 2014 at 11:22am

That is deliciously creepy.  Can you imagine, moving pictures were a novelty- it must've seemed like pure magic to most, but then to see a moving disembodied arm crawling about...well, I would just be very curious to know what being in that dark theater was like.  It had to have been absolutely thrilling, like no other experience at that time, aside from- perhaps, a carnival freak show...?

Comment by ThatGirl on October 10, 2014 at 5:16pm

@Geoff - Peter Lorre had such an expressive face , actually very handsome. I could see him having played mobsters but instead he played monsters.  The severed limbs concept got me on a roll seeking out a bunch of entertainment that led me from zombies to the Addams Family to costumes and back to Dracula.

I'd love to see you post a Blog asking Arkies to share their lists and some details about the films which scared THEM most as children. 

Comment by Geoff on October 10, 2014 at 5:21pm

I think, Syd, that the experience was probably closest to a magic show. The links between stage magic and early cinema are very strong. A wonderful short book on the topic is "The Magician and The Cinema" by Erik Barnouw, a scholar of broadcasting history in the the US who happened to love magic. Movies were originally presented as parts of magic acts in many countries--in Australia, in Hong Kong, in South Africa. The first really effective artist to work in films--at least this a common opinion--was the magician Georges Melies (who invented the jump cut). Houdini made many movies but they weren't very effective.

The irony that Barnouw emphasizes is that movies shrank the popular appetite for stage magic. Anybody could make the lady disappear in a movie (jump cuts again) so the live acts lost their cachet. The movie below features Melies, a highly skilled and experienced magician, but it could have been anybody at all.

Comment by NatureJunkie on October 11, 2014 at 12:48am

This is great. Like Syd, I can't help but try to imagine what it was like to be one of the audience members who first saw this in 1908. It was magic enough for me the first time I saw Thing on the Addams Family TV show.

It is interesting to contemplate the horror of disembodied hands. They're a recurring theme in a lot of horror and movie fiction. And then there is that aphorism, Idle hands are the devil's playground. 'Cause after all, people don't kill people. Hands kill people.

Comment by BlancheNoE on October 11, 2014 at 9:22am

Geoff, you rock but 30 seconds is a lot of time to wait. I mean, I could microwave a burrito in twice that time.

Now if you'll excuse me I have to go scream at the stupid slow-ass microwave.

Comment by ThatGirl on October 11, 2014 at 12:39pm

@T - the bikini girl really did just ask the guy "what does it mean, I'm "stacked"?  oh dear lawwwddd..thats good stuff.  And the Sheriff Dude, wow! People think cops are quick to draw THESE days...he's gonna kill the kid because he won't come quietly and put the bottle down. 

Comment by lima on October 12, 2014 at 8:34am

That was really enjoyable to watch! 

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