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A fairy godmother magically turns Cinderella's rags to a beautiful dress, and a pumpkin into a coach. Cinderella goes to the ball, where she meets the Prince - but will she remember to leave before the magic runs out?
Frankenstein, a young medical student, trying to create the perfect human being, instead creates a misshapen monster. Made ill by what he has done, Frankenstein is comforted by his fiancée ... See full summary »
J. Searle Dawley
A bat flies into an ancient castle and transforms itself into Mephistopheles himself. Producing a cauldron, Mephistopheles conjures up a young girl and various supernatural creatures, one ... See full summary »
A weary traveler stops at an inn along the way to get a good night's sleep, but his rest is interrupted by odd happenings when he gets to his room--beds vanishing and re-appearing, candles ... See full summary »
An Egyptian prince has lost his beloved wife and he has sought a dervish who dwells at the base of the sphinx. The prince promises him a vast fortune if the dervish will only give him the ... See full summary »
"In the opening of this film is seen the astronomer intently poring over his books. Suddenly, in a cloud of smoke, Satan appears and surprises the astronomer. At the command of the Fairy ... See full summary »
One of the greatest of black art pictures. The conjurer appears before the audience, with his head in its proper place. He then removes his head, and throwing it in the air, it appears on ... See full summary »
Although almost completely forgotten today, George A. Smith was quite possibly the key individual for the development of modern film grammar. This title is usually reserved for D.W. Griffith, but most of the grammar of cutting and camera placement were developed by Mr. Smith -- Griffith regularized the grammar, a major point, and made some brilliant films. However, Mr. Smith had largely left such issues behind by that point, being more interested in developing Kinemacolor, probably the first successful natural movie film color system. Then along came Dr. Kalmus with Technicolor, and there is something else that Smith isn't remembered for. Ay wheel.
As for this short subject, it is a racy one for 1897, showing a couple sparking, when along comes a man with an X-Ray machine. One zap and suddenly we are looking at a couple of intertwined skeletons and umbrella ribs.
For 1897 this is moderately advanced, even though Melies was doing such things regularly. And the camera cut that produces the effect is not intended as a grammatical punctuation, but more on the order of a scientific magic trick. It wouldn't be until the following year that we would see a clearly developing film grammar out of Mr. Smith....
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