Archive for November 15, 2013

Me and My Galatea (Male Chauvinist Pygmalion)

Posted in FILM with tags , , on November 15, 2013 by dcairns

pordenone 004

THE DOLL MAKER — from Pordenone Festival of Silent Film — spectacularly creepy melodrama about a maker of dolls (picture Gepetto crossed with Jimmy Stewart’s character in VERTIGO) who constructs a life-sized replica of his deceased daughter and dresses her in the slain sprog’s last outfit. He also cruelly rejects his young son, so upset is he by the loss of his little eye-candy-apple.

The story reaches a preposterous “touching” conclusion when the son’s she-urchin playmate, secretly invited by him to spend the night indoors, accidentally breaks the doll and is forced to take its place to conceal the destruction. Dad gets quite a surprise when he notices his babykins mannequin (babyquin?) is breathing, then resolves to adopt the child. Is she going to be a substitute for the original daughter or a substitute for the substitute? Is this meant to be a happy ending? I felt anxious rather than satisfied, since the film never made clear what Dad was getting up to with his baby doll in that back room…

The ending does suggest an alternate happy ending for DON’T LOOK NOW, in which Donald Sutherland welcomes the knife-wielding dwarf lady into his family as replacement for his departed daughter. Good sequel opportunities.

No images available for this film, and no credits either — practically nothing is known about it.