Häxan: The Esoteric Cut is a monster. Just like Frankenstein’s monster, this version is created from different bodies, bodies that once were and perished. With four copies of Witchcraft Through the Ages (1968), director and collector Fabien Delage managed to bring the dark gem of Danish cinema back to life with this brand-new high definition restored cut. Over the past decades, the film has been through several restoration and distribution attempts, yet it is the first time a version offers to rediscover the film in such a particular way. The new cut was created from Antony Balch’s version and it displays previously unseen English intertitles from 1968 and spellbinding, deep tones of amber reminiscing of the weird diabolical films directed by Segundo de Chomon at the beginning of the past century.
In the pure tradition of silent cinema, Benjamin Christensen’s scenes feature a piano score played by Lawrence Lehérissey, descendant of Georges Méliès and silent film-score composer. This new cut echoes Antony Balch’s experimental posture and shows a real artistic stance for it brings back the intertitles missing from the sound film and matches them with the ones found in the 1922 version. With its classic film score, it steps away from Metro Pictures Corporation’s cut and brings back to life the piano music that was usually played during film screenings in the past. Just like the 1960s version, this re-release offers the opportunity to explore Benjamin Christensen’s work with a contemporary twist.
The darkness and treasures it keeps are enthralling and Häxan proves to be an outstandingly bizarre, fascinating and occult artefact. It is always worth rediscovering, like a book of ancient spells, a dark relic that can rekindle the black flame of our passion for cinema. The Esoteric Cut is not just another version of Häxan, it is a real project: finding, fixing, digitalising, restoring and finally, preparing for exploitation. This previously unreleased restored version hides an enigmatic and diabolical code… Will you crack the secret? Will you dare to tread with the Devil?
Go down in history, support silent horror cinema. Bring Benjamin Christensen’s classic out of the shadows with this all new diabolical Blu-Ray limited edition!
New restored montage : 81 minutes
More than 40 never-seen-before intertitles from 1968
Digitized in 4K from the 1968 re-release version
New amber-coloured version, original harmonised shades
Soundtrack by French composer Lawrence Leherissey (Cinémathèque Française, Fondation Seydoux Pathé, Cinémathèque Méliès), Dolby Digital 5.1
Secret devilish code hidden inside the film frames
Danish cinema’s darkest treasure in a new restored version! Learn more about the restoration, visit the official project page! This new cursed version of Witchcraft Through The Ages will only be on Kickstarter for 30 days!
Morbid, perverse, diabolical, Benjamin Christensen’s macabre masterpiece can be called many things. It can be considered the first cult movie, a genuine « film maudit » or the first true feature-lenght documentary. Demonic visions, sabbath, possession, meeting with Satan, Häxan is the reference for witchcraft. Known for its fantastic depictions of Satanic debaucheries, profane rituals and its magnificent and Dantesque direction, Danish cinema’s black treasure has been the target of many religious detractors before it got lost through the ages. Pamphlet against obscurantism or real esoteric item ? Outrageous Häxan fires the imagination of supernatural enthusiasts and fuels many legends, such as a secret code hidden in the film frames, a code that would enable to get in touch with the devil himself.