The Poe Decoder - "The Fall of the House of Usher"

The complete first appearance of Lady Madeleine (Gwen Watford), having been spoken of by her frightened brother in the opening scene, in the 1949 British production of the Edgar Allan Poe story, The Fall Of The House Of Usher, directed, produced and photographed by Ivan Barnett.

Shackelford, Lynne P. “Poe’s ‘The Fall of the House of Usher.’”  (Fall 1986):18-19.

The Fall of the House of Usher, Raul Garcia, director, and Stephan Roelants, producer (Melusine Productions, R&R Communications Inc., Les Armateurs, The Big Farm)

Edgar Allan Poe's "The Fall of the House of Usher" ..

I choose to illustrate “The fall of the House of Usher” . However, I wanted to cite few other tales or poems (actually other 4) . Can you see them? The House of Usher fell one last time at Driftwood with our closing performance. This was a play inspired by Edgar Allan Poe’s short story The Fall of the House of Usher. The story follows the once wealthy Usher family, whose mansion (and family) has now fallen into complete disrepair. I play a character that is not in the original Poe story, but integral to the play’s plot: Claire, a fifteen-year-old girl who have never stepped outside the Usher house. It was an absolute pleasure to work with the Driftwood Players again, and with a terrific cast and crew!

The Fall of the House of Usher Summary - Shmoop

This highly unsettling macabre work is recognized as a masterpiece of American Gothic literature. Indeed, as in many of his tales, Poe borrows much from the Gothic tradition. Still, as G. R. Thomson writes in his Introduction to Great Short Works of Edgar Allan Poe, "the tale has long been hailed as a masterpiece of Gothic horror; it is also a masterpiece of dramatic irony and structural symbolism."

The Fall of the House of Usher has also been criticized for being too formulaic. Poe was criticized for following his own patterns established in works like Morella and Ligeia using stock characters in stock scenes and stock situations. Repetitive themes like an unidentifiable disease, madness, and resurrection are also criticized.

Poe's inspiration for the story may be based upon events of the Usher House, located on Boston's Lewis Wharf. As that story goes, a sailor and the young wife of the older owner were caught and entombed in their trysting spot by her husband. When the Usher House was torn down in 1800, two bodies were found embraced in a cavity in the cellar.

Another source of inspiration may be from an actual couple by the name Mr. and Mrs. Luke Usher, the friends and fellow actors of his mother Eliza Poe. The couple took care of Eliza's three children (including Poe) during her time of illness and eventual death.

Scholars speculate that Poe, who was an influence on Herman Melville, inspired the character of Ahab in Melville's novel Moby-Dick. John McAleer maintained that the idea for "objectifying Ahab's flawed character" came from the "evocative force" of Poe's The Fall of the House of Usher. In both Ahab and the house of Usher, the appearance of fundamental soundness is visibly flawed — by Ahab's livid scar, and by the fissure in the masonry of Usher.

The Fall of the House of Usher (1949) - IMDb