Phantom of the Opera

I learned this Halloween that old horror movies, when watched today, can be incredibly funny. Case in point: the 1925 version of Phantom of the Opera, directed by Rupert Julian. If you don’t know, this is a film about an up and coming Parisian opera star, Christine Daae, being stalked by a masked man living under the opera house. At one point she follows him down into the basement of the opera house and seems to be on the verge of falling in love with him. You think that fact that he was living “five cellars down” in the basement and speaking to her through the walls would have been some kind of clue for her, but no. Her skill set is singing opera, looking gorgeous, and fainting dramatically. Of course in the end she rejects the phantom, who is then conveniently killed by a Parisian mob.

What I found the most hilarious was the dialogue and the way the characters reacted to their situations. The Parisian solution to any crisis seemed to be running around waving their arms over their heads in a crowd possibly trampling people. That and at the end they decided to form a mob and run around with torches above their heads instead. Two of the funniest characters were the new owners of the opera who didn’t seem to have any control whatsoever over what was going on. Just before they took ownership the previous owners told them it was “barely possible” that they would see a ghost called the Phantom. That’s like selling your house, and as you’re walking out the door, telling the people you sold it to that it’s “barely possible” the roof might cave in.

It was a really good production and a great way to spend Halloween. The music, performed by Duane Hulbert and Sarah Stone, was excellent. Nothing adds to an old timey horror movie like creepy organ songs. The whole thing got me laughing which, in my book, made it a success.

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About lmcginnis

I'm a senior here at UPS . I'm working towards an English major and a Spanish minor. I love any kind of creative writing; I'm president of the Writers Guild. I'm working on completing my thesis, a novella titled "Like Butterflies." It's about a witch-figure who can take away people's memories. In my free time, I like to practice karate and read Agatha Christie.