Thursday, February 26, 2015

"The Appointment in Samarra" from "Targets" with Boris Karloff - (1968)

In his last film, “Targets”, Boris Karloff gives a chilling rendition of the classic story about Death by Somerset Maugham. It was later used by John O’Hara to pen his 1934 novel “The Appointment in Sammara.”

“DEATH SPEAKS" by Somerset Maugham

There was a merchant in Baghdad who sent his servant to market to buy provisions and in a little while the servant came back, white and trembling, and said, “Master, just now when I was in the marketplace I was jostled by a woman in the crowd and when I turned I saw it was Death that jostled me. She looked at me and made a threatening gesture; now lend me your horse, and I will ride away from this city and find my fate. I will go to Samarra and there Death will not find me.”

The Merchant lent him his horse, and the servant mounted it, and he dug his spurs in its flanks and as fast as the horse could gallop, he went. Then the merchant went down to the market-place and he saw me standing in the crowd and he came to me and said, “Why did you make a threatening gesture to my servant when you saw him this morning?”

“That was not a threatening gesture”, I said, “it was only a start of surprise. I was astonished to see him in Baghdad, for I had an appointment with him tonight in Samarra.”

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