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Movie Review: The Fall of the House of Usher 

Himika Akram reporter  

Mike Flanagan developed and directed the Netflix horror series The Fall of the House of Usher. It is based on Edgar Ellan Poe’s short story of the same name. The cast includes Bruce Greenwood as Roderick Usher, Carla Gugino as Madeline Usher, Mark Hamill as the narrator, and Frank Langella as the patriarch of the Usher family. 

The series begins with the narrator (Mark Hamill) visiting his dying friend, Roderick Usher (Bruce Greenwood) at Usher’s house. Roderick is a plain, sickly man preoccupied with pain and decay. He lives with his severely ill twin sister, Madeline (Carla Gugino). 

The narrator quickly understands the house of Usher is haunted. He experiences odd images and strange noises. He also discovers that the Ushers have a horrible family past.  

Madeline dies one night and is buried in a tomb beneath the house.  Roderick, however, is persuaded that she is not truly dead.  He believes that Madeline is in a trance and will awaken at some point.  

The narrator tries to persuade Roderick to leave Usher’s house, but he refuses. Roderick is adamant about being with his sister, even if it means his own death. 

The house of Usher eventually collapses, killing Roderick and Madeline. The lone survivor is the storyteller. 

This series is an evocative and visual spectacle one. Flanagan Masterfully creates an atmosphere of fear and suspense. The characters are well-developed and believable. As Roderick Usher, Bruce Greenwood offers a solid performance. He portrays the character’s fixation with death and decay wonderfully. Carla Gugino also shines as Madeline Usher. She perfectly depicts the character’s frailty and vulnerability. As the narrator, Mark Hamill is also excellent. He delivers an authoritative and compassionate voiceover delivery. 

It is a theme-rich series, I would say. Death, decay, madness, and the Usher family’s incestuous nature are among the series’ primary themes. One of the main reasons behind the series’ success is its adherence to Poe’s original tale. Flanagan wonderfully tricks Poe’s gothic atmosphere and psychological intricacy.  

There are also a few unforgettable scares in the series. The director created these horrors through several approaches, including sound design, cinematography, and editing. He delved into the issue of death in a variety of ways. The series takes place in a crumbling house, and all the characters are preoccupied with death. The deaths of the two characters are also part of the series’ climax. 

It also delved into the issue of degradation and insanity. The Usher House is a tangible manifestation of the Usher’s own regeneration. The house is ancient and dilapidated and bordered by a forested area. Roderick Usher is insane, and Madeline is also mentally ill. The series implies that the Ushers’ insanity stems from their incestuous bond. 

Overall, horror fans should view The Fall of the House of Usher. The series is visually evocative and well-acted, with several memorable scares. Even though the plot is simple, it is done with fantastic ability.  Flanagan takes his time creating the characters and generating suspense. The climax of the series is also incredibly gratifying. It is both surprising and obvious. My personal rating for this series would be 7.5/10. 

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