The Tell-Tale Heart (1953) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Tell-Tale Heart (1953)





Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

The Tell-Tale Heart Photos

Movie Info

Based upon the famous Edgar Allan Poe story, The Tell-Tale Heart is narrated in the first-person by James Mason, who starts out the story indignantly asking why one would call him mad. He then calmly and precisely relates the story of how he came to be obsessed with the Old Man who lived in the old house. Although the Old Man never harmed him nor did him wrong, he became tortured by his existence -- especially by his eye, the milky white film of which the Narrator soon imagined stared at him everywhere. The Narrator resolves to get rid of his enemy, and first makes sure that the Old Man will suspect nothing by gaining his trust. After waiting and watching with intense patience, he finally kills him late one night and disposes of the body by burying it beneath the floor and carefully replacing the floorboards. Police, having been alerted by a neighbor who head the Old Man's screams, arrive but see nothing amiss. The Narrator initially remains cool and calm and the police suspect nothing, but during their presence, the killer suddenly hears the Old Man's heart beating louder and louder. Eventually, certain that the police hear it as well and are just toying with him, he screams out his confession of guilt.


Stanley Baker
as Edgar Allan Poe
James Mason
as Narrator

Critic Reviews for The Tell-Tale Heart

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Audience Reviews for The Tell-Tale Heart

This short animated film based on the classic Edgar Allen Poe tale is a wonderful adaptation. It captures the feel of the short story perfectly, and it has that grim look you'd expect from a Poe story. James Mason's reading is also wonderful. If you are a fan of Poe or unique animation, definitely give this short a look.

Ken Scheck
Ken Scheck

A really good animated short, made in 1953, based on Edgar Allen Poe's short story of the same name. You should all know the story by now so I won't go over it again here. The animation was really good and captured the dark, paranoid tone of the story perfectly. Ditto for the narration. Yeah... Not much else to say about this one. Watch it, it's only 7.5 minutes long.

Ed Fucking Harris
Ed Fucking Harris

Super Reviewer

Morbid & chaotic, the narrator sounds like he is on something... The animation, while dark & one would assume fitting for the storyline, is perhaps the worst part. It doesn't do the characters or the story any justice to look so lame. Still, it is Edgar Allen Poe & one of his greatest works of horror! It is also interesting to note that this was, supposedly, rated X in Great Britain when it was initially released in 1953.

Morpheus One
Morpheus One

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