Monthly Archives: September 2011

Wednesday 10/5: “The Black Room” at the Portage Theater

In the Classic Film Series this Wednesday, October 5th we’ll be screening
Roy William Neill’s THE BLACK ROOM in a 35mm print from Sony Repertory!
The Portage Theater – 4050 N. Milwaukee Ave – 7:30 – $5.00 per ticket
For the full schedule of classic film screenings at the Portage, please click here.

Directed by Roy William Neill • 1935
Columbia’s lone effort in the first wave of talkie terror provides an unlikely climax to the whole cycle. Like Universal’s horror pictures, the setting is distinctly generic Mittel Europe, where villagers whisper of prophesies and torture chambers. Two twin brothers—Baron Gregor and Anton de Bergmann (Boris Karloff and Boris Karloff)—have voluntarily separated to stave off a divisive curse: one will kill the other in The Black Room. But Gregor’s brand of landed gentility—homicidal hounds and ravaged maidens across the countryside—calls for a moderate face and so Anton returns to the fold. The lynch mob of Frankenstein finds a political, rather than supernatural, target. A reminder of the top-notch set design, atmospheric photography, and rollicking editing that Columbia’s technicians were more than capable of achieving but rarely called upon to perform, The Black Room is a neglected Gothic classic. (KW)
68 min • Columbia • 35mm from Sony Pictures Repertory
Short: The Three Stooges in “Who Done It?” (1949, Edward Bernds) – 35mm

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