Directed by Richard Maurice • 1928 • United States
Starring Richard Maurice, Sammie Fields, Wanda Maurice
Produced in Detroit, Michigan by little-known African American filmmaker Richard Maurice, ELEVEN P.M. is a surreal melodrama in which a poor violinist named Sundaisy (Maurice) tries to protect an orphaned girl (Wanda Maurice) from a small-time hoodlum. The story, which may or may not be a dream concocted by a struggling newspaperman, has one of the most bizarre endings in film history, when the spirit of the deceased Sundaisy possesses the body of a dog in order to take vengeance upon the crook.
Professor and film scholar Charles Musser situates director Richard Maurice within the “Pioneers of African American Cinema” collection and the larger story of black film, touching on Maurice’s mysterious persona and how he was influenced by fellow black filmmaker Oscar Micheaux.