Cagliostro (1910)

aka Cagliostro, aventurier, chimiste et magiien
Article 3221 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 4-13-2010
Posting Date: 6-9-2010
Directed by Camille de Morlhon and Gaston Velle
Featuring Jean Jacquinet, Jacques Normand, Helene Du Montel
Country: France
What it is: Version of the Cagliostro story

Cagliostro kidnaps a gypsy girl and uses his hypnotic powers to turn her into a medium.

Sometimes you just accept these short silent films for what they are, but others you find yourself acutely aware that the story can’t be told in the time allotted. That’s the feeling I had about this one; in terms of story, there is a perfunctory feel about the whole affair here. However, I suspect that it isn’t so much about the story as the special effects; the beginning scene (in which a wizard uses special effects to show Cagliostro the gypsy girl) and a party scene (which is basically Cagliostro using the girl in his magic act) seem to exist solely to make extensive use of camera tricks. Nevertheless, it was nice to see another version of the Cagliostro story; I have had several on my hunt list over the years, but most of them seem unfindable.

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