The Fall of the House of Usher is on Roger Ebert’s Great Films List, and I can see why. I thought it was merely very good or near great, still it’s a fine channeling of the classic Edgar Allen Poe tale. I prefer it over the Roger Corman version as well, and I feel this silent era take on the story got it right. I’ve always enjoyed black and white cinematography, and Jean Epstein uses it to marvelous effect, with plenty of eerie shadows as well.
Everyone knows the story of course, although unlike myself not everyone has read it, although they should. The movie acknowledges this and goes head first into the tale, giving us plenty of moments of dread and some seriously dramatic forlonging. The sets are great in this movie as well, and although Epstein changed a few things the conclusion is close enough for my satisfaction. I watched this on YouTube and it’s old enough that I’m sure it is now public domain, so check it out.