Alexandre Promio – Football (1897)

This black and white short film is the first known film about football match. Read More »

Louis Lumière – Débarquement du congrès de photographes à Lyon (1895)


Débarquement du congrès de photographes à Lyon

Maths Jesperson on IMDb wrote:
Members of the French Photographic Society arrive from a riverboat to their congress venue in Neuville-sur-Saône on a summer day. They go ashore across a wooden landing stage. Among the many men in straw hats are also a few women in long skirts. Some of the men lift their hats toward the photographer when passing. Many of them are carrying their own cameras. Read More »

Alexandre Promio – Enfants pêchant des crevettes (1896)

Catalogue Lumière wrote:
Vue N° 45

“Des enfants traînent leurs filets sur la plage à mer basse : les fillettes, les jupes relevées, rivalisent d’entrain avec les garçons dans cet exercice.”

– Un des personnages porte un panier sur lequel est inscrit “Shrimp” [crevette].- Une vue supplémentaire et non cataloguée représente le même sujet.

Thierry Frémaux commented and wrote:
Ce film a été tourné en été par Alexandre Promio qui fut l’un des plus grands opérateurs Lumière. La scène se passe sur une plage d’Angleterre en 1896. Pieds nus dans l’eau, sous le regard de leurs mères en habit, des enfants munis d’épuisettes pêchent des crevettes. Mais le vrai sujet du film, c’est sa beauté. Read More »

Various – Early Cinema : Primitives & Pioneers (1895 – 1910)

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www.bfi.org.uk wrote:
The BFI’s fascinating collection of 60 short films all made before 1911 comes to DVD with the aim of giving wider access to some of the extraordinary film material held in the National Film and Television Archive, much of which has been restored. Although most films made at this time were actualities and newsreels, this collection contains mostly fiction films, ranging from the dramatic to the comic and the fantastical.

This double-disc set provides an entertaining look at how many film devices such as the close-up, the cut-away and editing, were first invented by film-makers before the turn of the century. Read More »

Georges Méliès – L’ Impressionniste fin de siècle (1899)


Although Georges Méliès’ The Conjuror (L’ Impressionniste fin de siècle) was was one of his earliest movies, it’s also an excellently realized example of Méliès’ basic style of cinematic magic.

The Conjuror revisits a scene that Méliès had explored before, and is basically a cinematic adaptation of the traditional magic trick “making the assistant disappear”. Méliès first presented this scene in his 1896 film The Vanishing Lady, which used simple camera stop-substitution to achieve the affect (no motion involved, and no in-camera dissolve). Méliès revisited the idea in his 1898 film The Magician, which made further use of the substitution effect, which by that time was only one of many effects that Méliès was using in his films. Read More »

Thomas A. Edison – Eleven Films (1894-1901)

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Thomas A. Edison
Eleven Films (1894-1901)

Edison Kinetoscopic Record of A Sneeze (1894)
IMDb: link
00:07 (1.1 Mb)

Crissie Sheridan (1897)
IMDb: link
00:37 (6.1 Mb)

Giant Coal Dumper (1897)
IMDb: link
00:37 (6.2 Mb)
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J. Stuart Blackton – The Enchanted Drawing (1900)


The Enchanted Drawing is a short film made in 1900. It was directed by J. Stuart Blackton, an American film producer of early silent films, the founder of Vitagraph Studios and an early animator.

Upon a large sheet of white paper a cartoonist is seen at work rapidly sketching the portrait of an elderly gentleman of most comical feature and expression. After completing the likeness the artist rapidly draws on the paper a clever sketch of a bottle of wine and a goblet, and then, to the surprise of all, actually removes them from the paper on which they were drawn and pours actual wine out of the bottle into a real glass. Surprising effects quickly follow after this; and the numerous changes of expression which flit over the face in the sketch cause a vast amount of amusement and at the same time give a splendid illustration of the caricaturist’s art. Read More »