A man opens the big gates to the Lumière factory. Through the gateway and a smaller doorway beside it, workers are streaming out, turning either left or right. Most of them are women in ... 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 »
A man dressed in red is ushered into an antechamber in a Castle and offered a seat. When he tried to sit down the chair moves to the other side of the room causing the man to fall on the ... See full summary »
A traveler puts up at an inn. He hangs his overcoat and hat upon a peg in his room, but he finds, instantly, that his clothes are on his back again. He takes off his coat a second time, but... See full summary »
When this picture opens, you see a large book mounted on an easel. An old student is seen poring over old manuscripts when he advances toward the book, and by the aid of some mysterious ... See full summary »
In this scene is shown a magician behind an ordinary table, upon which he suddenly and mysteriously causes to appear a large box, into which he leaps. The sides of the box fall to the ... See full summary »
Three military men, seen inside a fortification, are firing on an unseen enemy force. The call for reinforcements but ladders appear signaling the enemy is about to overrun this position. ... See full summary »
This sure doesn't look like a film from Georges Méliès.
I have seen just about every extant film by the great French filmmaker Georges Méliès and I must say that if I didn't know better, I'd swear it was not one of his films. The style, look and composition bear no similarities to his work....none. With Méliès, you expect trick cinematography--such as appearing and disappearing people or objects. However, this film is very different--very 'normal' and apparently set outdoors (whereas his other films were made in an odd set that looked indoors while using natural light by not having a roof overhead.
Of all the films about the Dreyfus Affair I have seen, this is the only one that was made during the height of the incident--while Dreyfus was incarcerated on Devil's Island for supposedly betraying his country. He's simply shown in a stockade-like enclosure doing not much of anything. Then a jailer comes in and gives him a letter--though we have no idea WHAT that is all about. In many ways, it is so mundane that you'd almost think it was by the famous Lumière Brothers.
All in all, a rather brave political statement, as like Zola and a few other celebrities, Méliès is trying to sway public opinion in Dreyfus' favor in order to win his release. While not the most interesting film, an important one historically.
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