Watch The Headless Horseman
- 1 hr 8 min
The 1922 film The Headless Horseman follows the story of Ichabod Crane (played by Will Rogers), a schoolteacher who travels to a small village in upstate New York to teach at a local school. While there he meets Katrina Van Tassel (Lois Meredith), the daughter of a wealthy farmer, and falls in love with her. However, Katrina is already engaged to a local hero named Brom Bones (Ben Hendricks Jr.), who becomes jealous of Ichabod's advances.
The legend of the Headless Horseman is also prevalent in the village, and Ichabod becomes increasingly fearful of encountering the ghostly figure. He is invited to a party at the Van Tassel's home, where he hopes to win Katrina's heart, but instead finds himself the subject of ridicule from Brom and the other party-goers. Later that night, Ichabod sets off on his horse to return home, but is chased by the Headless Horseman, and never seen again.
The film was based on Washington Irving's 1820 short story The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, and the plot remains faithful to the original. However, the film adds a comedic tone and a love triangle between Ichabod, Katrina, and Brom that was not present in the original story.
Will Rogers was a popular vaudeville performer and silent film star of the time, and his comedic timing and affable personality added charm to his portrayal of Ichabod. Lois Meredith, who played Katrina, was a rising star in Hollywood and brought her own brand of grace and poise to the film.
The Headless Horseman was one of the first films to use three-strip Technicolor, a groundbreaking technology that allowed for full-color films. However, only a small portion of the film is in color, as the process was still experimental and expensive at the time.
The film was directed by Edward D. Venturini, who had previously directed several silent films and would go on to direct several Westerns and crime dramas. The Headless Horseman was one of his most successful films, and it remains a classic Halloween staple to this day.
Overall, The Headless Horseman is a charming and entertaining adaptation of a classic story. The love triangle adds an extra layer of depth to the plot, and the comedic moments keep the film lighthearted despite its spooky subject matter. Will Rogers and Lois Meredith make a delightful duo, and the film's use of three-strip Technicolor is a testament to Hollywood's early experimentation with color films.
The Headless Horseman is a 1922 horror movie with a runtime of 1 hour and 8 minutes. It has received mostly poor reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 5.0.