Les Vampires (1915)

Les Vampires


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Movie Info

Louis Feuillade's pioneering silent serial -- whose ten episodes weigh in at nearly eight hours -- concerns Guèrande (Edouard Mathé), a journalist who is trying to uncover the truth about a mysterious society of anarchist gangsters who call themselves Les Vampires. While they don't drink the blood of the living, Les Vampires are the uncrowned monarchs of the criminal underworld, and as Guèrande struggles to learn the full extent of their lawless activities and the true identity of leaders the … More

Rating: Unrated
Genre: Drama, Horror, Art House & International, Mystery & Suspense, Classics
Directed By:
Written By: Louis Feuillade
In Theaters:
On DVD: May 16, 2000


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Critic Reviews for Les Vampires

All Critics (13) | Top Critics (2)

Louis Feuillade's extraordinary ten-part silent serial of 1916, running just under eight hours, is one of the supreme delights of film.

Full Review… | October 16, 2007
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

It's possible to overstate the extent to which all this is a bunch of fun: if shown, as it often is, in one great unnatural marathon, it can be sheer torture.

Full Review… | January 26, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

A cracking good story...in those wonderful moments where Musidora's kohl-marked face stares right out of the screen and into your soul, it's terribly perfect.

Full Review… | July 22, 2008
Antagony & Ecstasy

The elaborate production, written and directed by Louis Feuillade, is an epic modern crime thriller, the precursor to many of today's multi-million dollar action films.

March 4, 2008

[Director Louis Feuillade] masterfully builds suspense over the film's massive, nearly 7-hour running time.

Full Review… | May 26, 2006
Combustible Celluloid

Classic Crime serial, with superb storytelling.

Full Review… | January 18, 2005
Classic Film and Television

Audience Reviews for Les Vampires

this isn't a horror movie; it's a crime thriller. produced by gaumont to compete with the popular perils of pauline serial, it's divided into 10 parts, average 30-45 minutes. these were shown in theaters before the main feature. the story follows reporter philippe guérande's investigation of the mysterious exploits of a gang of master criminals known as les vampires. it's full of nefarious plots, disguises and daring escapes, with stunning stuntwork. musidora, a former acrobat, plays irma vep, cinema's first femme fatale, slinking around in a body stocking like catwoman. comic relief is provided by guérande's friend mazamette, who often appears to address the camera. yes it took awhile to get through, but for the most part it was highly entertaining :)

Stella Dallas

Super Reviewer

Mercifully broken into 10 parts, Les Vampires would have been better if, instead of "Irma Vep", "Vampire" had been rearranged to spell "Ima Perv". That notwithstanding, I was slightly disappointed to realize there were no real vampires involved (oh, spoiler alert maybe), rather just a gang of people committing crimes calling themselves "The Vampires." For 6 hours and 39 minutes. It took me over a week to get through all 10 parts, it was like a chore. But it gets bonus points for being from 1915, before any of the otherwise familiar elements seen in the movie technically ever existed. This doesn't mean it holds up that well in my book, but I do give it marks for originality.

an enormously entertaining 10 part french crime serial (silent), staring Musidora as Imra Vep, perhaps the sexiest femme fatale in cinema to date.

steven mayo

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