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Carnival of Souls: Original Theatrical Version (Criterion Collection) back to product details

It Will Haunt You Forever...
written by mdraine February 19, 2003 - 9:11 PM PST
11 out of 11 members found this review helpful
Carnival of Souls is a haunting, exquisitely photographed story of a young church organist caught between the worlds of the living in the dead. While producer/director Herk Harvey aspired to the *look of a Bergman and the feel of the Cocteau,* the film could pass for a feature-length Twilight Zone episode. Turning a low budget to his advantage, Herk Harvey elicited poetic images from local Lawrence, Kansas settings: the decrepit Saltair Pavilion; the cathedral-like organ factory; a Hitchcockian, vortex-like stairwell. At the distributor's behest, the film was sheared of five minutes by B-movie journeyman Herbert Strock. The edits intensify the dreamlike air by confining the point of view to that of of the female protagonist; thus, this shorter version arguably offers a more coherent narrative. With one foot in the arthouse and one in the drive-in, Carnival of Souls represents a triumph of inspiration over limited means. --Michael Draine


(Average 7.31)
222 Votes
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