THE MISTLETOE BOUGH (1904)
Article 4383 by Dave Sindelar
Directed by Percy Stow
What it is: Short tragedy
A bride disappears from her wedding party and hides in a crate. She can not be found by the other members of the wedding party. Then, thirty years later….
This macabre little silent short just recently popped up on the internet, thus allowing me to retrieve it from my “ones that got away” list. The short is not quite complete; it’s missing its final reveal, but given the action that leads up to it, it’s not that difficult to figure out what is seen, and I checked the Willis guide for a quick rundown to help. It’s based on a poem that I haven’t read, so I’m not familiar with the story. As such, the short leaves many unanswered questions for me; why was the woman hiding in the crate? How did it get sealed? Why didn’t anybody bother to open the crate for thirty years? And, perhaps most interestingly, why would someone have a premonition thirty years after it would do anyone any good? The story itself is rather compact, but I did find the short rather slow-moving, especially in the beginning; for me, a long dance sequence is no way to kick off a story. At any rate, I’m glad to have had a chance to cross this one off of my list.