The early days of Horror Cinema - Silent Films
Where the horror cinema was born ?
In Europe, in Grance, in Paris. The theatre Robert - Houdin was the birthplace of horror cinema. On Christmas Eve - 1896, it was the first time in history of Cinema for the projection of a film with a supernatural theme - actually the theme of film was Mephistopheles.
Le Manoir Du Diable (The haunted castle)
Was produced in 1896 by Star Studio (France) and directed by George Mellie’s. Also the script of the film was written by Georges Mille's.
The main character of Mephistopheles was performed by Jeanned d’ Alcy.
It is a 3 minutes short silent film.
Film opens with a large bat flying into a medieval castle, it transforms into Mephistopheles. Mephistopheles is the owner of the estate and plays by creating demons, skeletons and other evil supernatural creatures.
It’s a super short film, about 3 minutes but it has a script structure with three acts.
The first act (from 0 to 61 second) is about the introduction of the evil character and his abilities and skills. The Mephistopheles, the filmmaker introduces the character by presenting him as a bat and then his transformation, abilities and his skills to create an army of evil servants and other supernatural creatures to serve him.
The second act (from 62 second till 3:11 ) is the introduction of the good character. An knight or a man of medieval aristocracy with his friend visits the Castle. Furniture appears and disappears. The place is haunted. The friend of main character escapes by running.
The main character stays in the castle and skeletons and other evil creatures appear in front of him. Finally, we can see the bat again and the transformation of bat into Mephistopheles. The struggle begins between the good character and the evil (the villain).
The third act, the good character uses a large cross and the evil poufs away.
The theme of the film
Only with faith you can win evil.
You can see the film on Youtube :
Relative resources for further studying