The Mysteries of Myra
Wharton 1916 / 15 Episodes
Produced by Theodore Wharton
Directed by Leopold Wharton
Featuring Jean Sothern as Myra
Howard Estabrook as Dr. Payson Alden
Michael Rale as the Master of the Black Order
Restored by Eric Stedman
Music by Kevin McLeod of incompetech.com
THE MYSTERIES OF MYRA was the first film to portray occult and supernatural phenomena in an up-to-date and realistic fashion, as opposed to in fairy tale/mythological style. Its heroine, Myra Maynard, is plagued by a wide variety of metaphysical assaults by the corrupt Black Order, a secret organization which uses magic, curses and any supernatural means possible to achieve its ends. In this case their desire is to murder Myra Maynard as they did her two sisters before her in order to gain control of her inheritance. Myra is defended by Dr. Payson Alden, the movies’ first paranormal investigator, who uses scientific means to try to defeat the evil cult. Alden is played by Howard Estabrook who, after this serial, quit acting to become a well-known screenwriter.
What exists is surprisingly involving and sometimes actually still scary even today.
Paranormal-investigation and ghost-hunting pioneer Hereward Carrington was the primary consultant for the production, which includes scenes showing characters doing automatic writing, crystal gazing, and using astral bodies, and much more. MYRA was also the first film to ever depict what is now known as a “satanic cult,” (the Black Order), as inspired by Aliester Crowley’s Golden Dawn society. Yes, this really is what people have drawn from ever since.
The final episode is one of the earliest existing examples of a Frankenstein-like monster being depicted on film, 15 years before the Universal picture featuring Boris Karloff.
The transfer of the original footage is from 35mm and excellent in quality, sometimes exhibiting signs of decomposition.
These episodes have been painstakingly restored from stills and existing film footage, according to the content of the original scripts. An update to this DVD may be offered later if additional content is to be restored or re-created but you may order this DVD now, which contains all the existing restored content worked on up to this point.
THE DAGGER OF DREAMS
The Master puts a spell on Myra, who discovers
a secret chamber in the basement of her house.
THE FUMES OF FEAR
Professor Haji and Dr. Alden search for the Black Order
and Myra allows herself to be hypnotized to release her astral body.
THE ELIXIR OF YOUTH
The Master gives an aging couple a magic elixir
in exchange for their promise to kill Myra and Dr. Alden.
THE THOUGHT MONSTER
The Black Order creates a monster from their combined evil
thoughts which Dr. Alden then hypnotizes and turns against them.
This DVD should be purchased with a copy of the MYSTERIES OF MYRA Novel, which contains over 180 rare stills and background information on the original serial as well as the complete story.
ORDER THE BOOK
6" x 9" 400-page bookstore-quality trade paperback
With color cover and black and white interior, spine about 1"
Paperback edition: $25
Same contents as above, with color wraparound dust jacket additional color images of the two existing MYRA posters and other memorabilia printed on the interior flaps.
Deluxe Hardbound Library Edition: $40
"I just received my MoM hardcover today. To be honest, I was a little nervous; publish on demand books are usually pretty badly designed and produced. But this was fantastic. A handsome book, well worth the money. I'm really glad you pursued this project. Great job." -- Larry Latham
ORDER THE DVD
1-DVD Set Released October 2015
English - 1:33:1 - Full Screen - Black and White with color tinting - 1916 - 4 Episodes restored with video footage and animated stills - Digitally mastered - Chapter and scene selections - Suitable for all audiences
MYSTERIES OF MYRA DVD LINK