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THE WESSEX HOTEL'S 13TH FLOOR'S ROOM #9


Musical Note:
The music starting at the end of the last scene carry over into this one. It provides a creepy and ominous feel that informs the viewer that something scary is about to happen, and unfortunately enough, it is one that we have come to love. It is a tragic and emotional scene and the music helps to portray these emotions very well. Remember, with censorship rules and regulations for cable television channels of the era, the imagery and the music are what help create the ambiance that really scare the crap out of it's viewers.

On Closer Inspection...:
We are taken to a room of the hotel that looks like no other in the building, although at the moment the viewer isn't supposed to know where we are just yet. There is a antique-styled canopy-type bed with red drapery over the corner and a red valance at the top. There is artwork on the wall, illuminated by the antique gaslamps used to provide illuminescene. There is an antique brown dresser, a desk with a mirror with could act as a vanity, a small round table with two white chairs on either side, and antique vases and pottery. The bottom of the room contain the dark brown veneer and dados used throughout the remainder of the hotel. Above the chair rail, and below the picture rail, the wallpaper resembles stonework, with help give the room an anachronistic and "dungeon-type" feel. The top of the wall is white, similiar to every other location in the Wessex. There is an oriental rug in the center of the room, under the round table and chairs.

Mrs. Beecher: Oh... where am I?

The camera continually pans in towards the bed. We hear soft wimpering as an unconscious Mrs. Beecher slowly begins to awaken and regain consciousness. She sits up and rubs her head, completely unsure of what is going on around her. She looks around this space. She has never been in anywhere like this. All she wanted was a chance to relax after all of her years of devotion on her and her husband's farm in Silo, Minnesota, and just to happened to decide to stay at the Wessex during her visit to the Los Angeles Crystal Convention. The name appealed to her, and the power of her crystals told her that this was the one. Unfortunately, things really do not seem like they are going to end well for poor Mrs. Beecher.

Mrs. Beecher: Oh... ah... oh.

Note:
We next see a devilish looking head, with sadistically content smile and long pointed ears, sitting on a small little wooden platform that acts as an alter, and is the focal point in between elaborate and ornate candelabras. It is an image that tells that something bad is going to happen. It is vaguely reminiscent to the demonic imagery shown during the opening credits sequence on Page 2. The juxstaposition of demonic imagery... and Mrs. Beecher, are not good things. Not good at all.

Mrs. Beecher: Oh...

Note:
Mrs. Beecher slowly slides to the edge of the bed. She looks very unnerved. She had probably been drugged, possibly during the night, and is now just waking up. It is unknown how the killer knows that she awakens, but he knows. At least now we know where she is, seeing she missed the convention, but we know that something bad is going to happen to her, and we feel a deep, overwhelming sense of fear and anxiousness for Mrs. Beecher to escape the situation she has been unknowingly thrust into.

Musical Note:
About this time the camera shows another room, this time showing a desk. A hand protruding through a layer of white and a layer of black, long sleeved robe-type material reaches over and flips a switch and an old-timey wax cylinder player. All of a sudden the signature "Wessex Death March" comes on in full force but it doesn't help to ease Mrs. Beecher's uneasiness, it only seems to make it slightly worse.

On Closer Inspection...:
On and around the desk appear to be a giant, demonic looking bat-like creature, books and urns, deer heads statuaries, trinket boxes, gaslamps, ancient scrolls, black painted statues and even a clear crystal ball that resides upon the desk.

Note:
Moselle is still wearing the pink blouse with the frills that she was wearing two days ago, when Elaine had seen her last. She is no longer wearing her hat or her jacket, although we will see her hat again a little later in the movie.

Note:
We then see a goldish budda-esque type statue, laying eyes open on a thick-rimmed, leaf-covered "coffin" type carving. His left hand lays upon his chest, almost as if reaching for his neck. There is a marking on his forehead that is symbolic of his religion.

Foreshadowing the Future:
Mrs. Beecher has gotten out of bed, and is crossing through the room, taking in her surroundings, and not seeming to like any of it. The artwork behind her appears a little blurry to try and tell what it is of, but it appears to be someone on the left holding down something, (maybe a deer?) while a person on the right looks to be carrying an axe, obviously fixing to decapitate the animal (in this case, hopefully to be used as a food source) while a third person, in the middle, appears to be watching in anticipation. It is a devistating use of foreshadowing to help envoke images of tragic, horrific deeds.

Note:
There are dead flowers in a flowering pot on a small table underneath the hanging artwork. All throughout the movie, we have seen fresh flowers used as a colorful reminder of the eloquentness of the little things (from the flowers and plants in Elaine's house, to the excessive use of them in the Wessex) and now we are seeing dead flowers, obviously not having been changed in years. The use of the dead flowers in a plot tool that helps to compliment the use of demonic imagery in envoking fear and empathy.

Note:
There is a "Creeeeeeeeek" as a brown rimmed, glass fronted case revealing an axe is slowly opened. The use of demonic imagery, ominous background music, the signature death theme, dark colors, dead flowers, and now an axe... are not good signs. We feel really, really bad, and very worried for Mrs. Beecher.

The case is opened and we see a hand, this time the left hand that matches the right hand that we saw earlier turning on the wax cylinder player. It appears to be a black robe with a white layer sticking out from beneath it, reminiscent of an old-timey, anachronistic, "judges" type "uniform".

Note:
The wallpaper is red and gold with intricate and ornate, tessilating designs. It provides an heir of richness reminiscent of the Wessex, although with a darker, more ominous tone and feel.

Anachronistically Speaking:
Buildings in the early days were extremely prone to catching fire. A combination of cigarettes, gaslamps, dry conditions and carelessness damaged quite a few buildings in the early days, before building codes began to stricten. Fire axes were commonly used in areas such as hotels and office buildings and the like, and were at one time a manadory code used in the building process, especially when the floor contains an abundance of wooden - either solid core, or hollow core - doors. You must have at least one fire axe on each floor, similar to fire escapes and metal fire doors today. Newer constructions seem to be slowly phasing out the use of the fire axe, although certain locations do still utilize their services. Their original purpose would be in case a fireman was needing to get inside of a burning, locked room, to save an innocent's life, or to hack down a door that may be his own path to freedom, and didn't have one easily accessible. Most firefighters will carry their own axe, today, but at one time, having access to a fire axe while trapped in a burning building was literally what made the difference between living and dying.

Note:
Fire axes are also being phased out to prevent them from being used as an easily accessible weapon...

Note:
The round vase/urn in the foreground in front of window almost appears to have a face. Several other spots will appear to have a face looking at you, giving a strange and ominous feeling that you are always being watched, and are never alone.

Note:
Mrs. Beecher goes for the window, scared of what she may see on the other side. While she would usually open the curtains in a graceful and serene manner, she is terrified of her current location, and gives no second thought to ripping the curtains down.

The window is covered with dark red curtains with large, orange-goldish drapes on either side. This looks nothing like the cheery white drapes that covered the windows in Elaine's room.

The expression on Mrs. Beecher's face is a worried one as she pulls the crimson curtains down in a scared and worried state. The curtains come down revealing that the window has been bricked over from the outside. The brick appears to be a slightly lighter color than the brick used on the exterior of the Wessex, and appears to possess a soft glow, almost as if being illuminated by some sort of bioluminescence. The windows are later revealed to be behind the demonic concrete frieze that wraps around the building between the 12th and 14th floors. It is unknown why the windows were bricked over, and then a frieze constructed, as the frieze would cover the windows anyway, unless the brick contain some kind of wall ties that help to hold the frieze into place (as most of it is supported through the already built-in entablature above the 12th and below the 14th floors). In any case it creates an extremely feeling of claustrophobia that scares Mrs. Beecher senseless.

Mrs. Beecher: Ah!

Poor Moselle looks to be extremely frightened as she turns away from the window and looks back at the frightening decorum that adorns her "room".

We see a shadow being cast off of the axe, that was recently removed from the case...

We see another shadow, this time the silhouette of a man walking while carrying the axe. We know that something is wrong, and that maybe Elaine is right. Maybe someone inside of the hotel really is killing people. We feel horrible as we know that the figure is coming for Mrs. Beecher...

Mrs. Beecher runs to the door of the room, wanting to find a way out of this horrific nightmare. The door will not open. Perhaps Mrs. Beecher isn't turning the knob hard enough, but we can tell that she is horrified. She strains and struggles until she finally gets the door to open.

Anachronistically Speaking:
The doors to the rooms on this floor are dark brown, 6-panel doors that help to compliment the look of the bottom dados. As we have seen earlier when Elaine was trying to get ahold of Moselle in her room - #871, the doors on the newer, more modern looking floors have solid, plain doors which give the door more of a look of grandeur and stoutness. These doors more than likely, then, always looked like the original 6-panel doors, but were replaced during the hotel's massive remodel, in an effort to rebrand their look and to eliminate any stereotypes. The 6-panel doors definitely help to compliment the moulding, and it is questionable whether or not replacing them to make them appear more stately is an issue, but we know that this floor, untouched by time, contains a look, style, and feel, that more than likely hasn't been felt for almost 90 years.

"Please open!", Mrs. Beecher thinks as she finally gets the door to open and rushes outside, looking around and wondering which way to turn. The hallway looks just like one of the regular floor hallways, but it looks and feels rather bizarre. Mrs. Beecher is frightened and has no clue just where in the hotel she has ended up, but she doesn't like it one bit.

On Closer Inspection...:
After Moselle gets the door open and comes outside, the door swings itself shut, revealing the number "9" on it between the 3rd and 4th panels from the top.

Anachronistically Speaking:
The door to Mrs. Beecher's room is "9". Later we will see a "7". The numbering system utilized on this ancient floor is a classic system where each room on the floor was given a number, i.e., 1 through 9. The newer system of counting rooms on the remodeled floors utilize a combination of the floor number and the room number. For example, room number 9 on the 6th floor would be labeled as Room #609. The 71st room on the 8th floor would become Room #871 - Mrs. Beecher's room while Elaine's room - Room #676 would be the 76th room on the 6th floor. Saying for instance, "Room #1479" and it's intended meaning being "the 79th room on the 14th floor" is easier to understand than to actually have to say. It probably became a major convienience factor for the hotel when the remodel was completed...

Mrs. Beecher turns to her right and clutches onto the wall as she exits the room. She starts to make her way down the ominous, eerily-lit hallway. She doesn't like what is going on, and although she is unaware of her fate, she definitely senses that something is wrong. It looks like she never should have decided to come to the Crystal Convention - or at least she shouldn't have decided to stay at the Wessex! We'll have to blaim her travel agent - Betty James - for even suggesting the place...

There is another shadowy silhouette of the "man with the axe". He seems to be closing in on Mrs. Beecher and that's not a good thing.

Mrs. Beecher makes her way down the hallway, uneasy and unnerved. She has her lips clinched in a fearsome manner that makes us feel that worry that she possesses. She is likely praying and begging for a way out. Unfortunately, there isn't one... Not one that isn't hidden away behind locked doors, anyway...

The wallpaper on the wall at the end of the corridor is torn and has been ripped off in giant chunks. The tattered wallpaper, the dark red and deep brown, mixed with the ample lighting coming from the gaslit sconces provide a really creepy feeling that will make the need for electric lighting a necessity. It's a good thing the hotel revamped its image and added ceiling lighting, as well as brighter coloring on the walls. An entire hotel, elaborate or not, would retain an aura of creepiness, if the entire hotel still looked like this floor. Brightening the colors and covering the older, original wooden floors with crimson carpeting add a modern and lively touch that the hotel definitely needed.

Mrs. Beecher: Oh, ah! Ah!

Mrs. Beecher sees the shadow of an axe, followed by a man weilding it, coming around the corner.

Alternate Scenes:
Mrs. Beecher watches with fear as the shadow of the axe-weilding maniac comes around the corner. On the USA World Premiere Movie's one minute preview, we see the same scene, although this time the lighting casts a creepier feel, Mrs. Beecher is no longer in the frame, and we see the axe gleaming in the ambient lighting, rather than just seeing it's shadow as it is coming around the corner.

Note:
The wallpaper on this end of the hallway is just as tattered as the wallpaper on the opposite end of the hallway, making you wonder exactly why and how that could be...

Mrs. Beecher stands holding her hands over her mouth, mortified. Her eyes are wide and she is stunned and in disbelief.

Mrs. Beecher: Ooohh! Ohh!

Mrs. Beecher starts to turn, hoping to run away. She is older, and unfortunately can't run as fast as she could, say, 20 years ago, and she hates thinking that she will have to. She has no choice, and decides to at least try, rather than just stand there and be slaughtered...

The camera shows the hallway again, but this time from the opposite end, making it appear long and looming. Mrs. Beecher is shown at the end of it, and it is a reminder of the tediousness of her task. She's scared, can't run very fast, and she knows a man with an axe is somewhere on the floor, and coming toward her. We feel so scared for Moselle and wish we could lift her out of this nightmare safely and securely. Unfortunately, there isn't anything we can do to help and save her, and it makes the viewer feel powerless.

The poor, elderly lady is devistated, and we are too. We have been shown since Elaine arrived what a good and wonderful person that Moselle is, and to know that something beyond our control is fixing to happen to her helps to induce a sense of anger and hatred towards the person who is about to attack her. It makes us wonder where in the hotel this is occuring, and makes us question why and when Elaine and the staff will be able to stop this from occuring. It won't be too long, however, before we learn that the entire staff is in on it, and that this is the hotel's hidden 13th floor - "the devil's number".

Moselle runs back to the room that she had just exited - Room #9.

Mrs. Beecher: Open it! Open it!

It is unknown why Moselle is hollaring for someone to open the door, knowing she just left and that she was the only person in it. In her frazzled state she is obviously not thinking clearly, and desperately hopes and prays that someone will open the door that can somehow help her.

Multiplicity:
The door to Room #9 does indeed open, but rather than being someone that could help Mrs. Beecher to escape, we see a man holding an axe, poised to strike. The man was coming around the corner a minute ago and now all of a sudden he appears from within Mrs. Beecher's "room".

Errors In Continuity:
While it might be understandable that the room is missing a closet, it should have at least possessed a door connecting it to the room adjacent. The room shows no other doorway, other than it's primary entrance, but the killer is now inside the room. This gives rise to the belief that hidden passages and trap doors are used throughout the hotel. It is a fact, that many older buildings did indeed include hidden passages and trap doors in their design, and many times included a labyrinthine layout... Trap door, or spatially erroneous connector door, somehow or another, the man is now inside of the room and we know he didn't run in front of Mrs. Beecher...

Moselle focuses on the man and the axe, before shifting her eyes to focus only on the axe, now coming down, straight towards her. It is very, very tragic, and we know Moselle's fate is sealed.

Mrs. Beecher: Oh. Aaaaahhhh!!!

Counting Corpses:
The tragic death of Moselle Beecher marks the third death (Death #3) at the hotel since Elaine has arrived, and marks (Death #11) on the hotel's current count...

CONTINUE TO PAGE #14