Serial Thriller

Les Vampires is as fresh and fast as it was in 1915

Irma Vep seems trapped. The Queen of the Paris underworld is hiding in her attic as the police storm upstairs. Fortunately, she keeps 100 ft. of rope for just such exigencies. She coils it around her waist, climbs out the window and falls, twirling like a runaway yoyo, till she lands seven stories below. Vice triumphant!

And ageless melodrama in all its florid glory. This scene, from Louis Feuillade's 10-part serial Les Vampires, was shot in 1915, the year of The Birth of a Nation. D.W. Griffith's epic, a masterpiece of film form, creaks today. But Les Vampires, with thrill...

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