The Terrible Turkish Executioner (1904)

Article #415 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing date: 5-4-2002
Posting date: 9-27-2002

A terrible Turkish executioner beheads four men; they put their heads back on and exact revenge.

How terrible is he? Well, he can pull out his great big sword and decapitate four men with one blow, which is certainly efficient, and perhaps horrific enough for him to earn the epithet “terrible.” However, since the men don’t die (which is the point of an execution, after all), one might argue that this executioner was totally ineffectual, hence he did a terrible job, thereby making him in another sense of the word, “terrible.” I would therefore conclude that the executioner in question is indeed “terrible” in every sense of the word. And now that I have spent several minutes harping on the pun in the title, I feel the need to point out that the movie is a three-minute Melies short, and it takes less time to watch it than it does to write this. Isn’t that just a little bit pathetic of me, actually?


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