A beautiful masterpiece, The Phantom of the Opera has always touched my soul. I remember going on a school trip to Toronto and being mesmerized when I saw it live. I sat on the edge of my seat, transfixed by the music, sets and atmosphere. I don't think I have ever been so moved to tears in my entire life. The way the notes lifted my heart, I swear I could have flown to Heaven and back.

When I heard they were making a movie based on the musical in 2003, I was so excited. Finally, I would have a chance to enjoy the wonder again. I knew that a movie had been made in 1925 based on the novel by French novelist Gaston Leroux, but silent movies sounded boring to me then. When I met the love of my life, he introduced me to one of the funniest actors I had ever seen, Charlie Chaplin.

As I was watching one of Charlie Chaplin's movies, I learned to appreciate silent movies as an art form. As a lover of arts, I decided to challenge myself by watching a marathon of silent films. I enjoyed some, was bored by others, but fell in love with the 1925 version of The Phantom of the Opera.

Lon Chaney and Bela Lugosi are the kings of monster movies in my opinion. Chaney's portrayal of the phantom was nothing short of brilliant. Most actresses today mainly get by just on looks, and looks alone. Mary Philbin was not only a very beautiful actress, but very talented as well. I might not have heard her speak, but her gestures and mannerisms told her story.

After watching this movie, I found a better understanding and appreciation for the musical. I believe most people are more familiar with the musical, but they really should watch the 1925 version or read the book. This is only my opinion of course, but I think it might give others a better appreciation as well.

See, I always saw The Phantom of the Opera as a love story, a musical. I had heard people say that it was supposed to be a horror story, along the lines of Dracula. Now that I have seen Lon Chaney as the Phantom, I can fully understand. Holy schnickerdoodles!!! Chaney had me scared speechless a few times. He was just absolutely brilliant, I don't think I can praise his performance enough.

In short, I believe I have found a new love and appreciation for The Phantom of the Opera and all silent films. These were movies made for the art and entertainment values. The actors and actresses were truly talented. Then again, I kind of would like to know just exactly what they were saying when their mouths were moving. I think it might be something like this, "Why do I have to move my mouth when the audience isn't going to hear me anyway?".

A sneak peak at the wonders and marvels to come.

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