A side-splitter. Uncle Josh occupies a box at a vaudeville theatre, where a moving picture show is going on. First a dancer appears on the screen. Uncle Josh jumps to the stage and endeavors to make lover to her, but she flits away, and immediately there appears upon the screen the picture of an express train running at sixty miles an hour. Uncle Josh becomes panic-stricken, and fearing to be struck by the train, makes a dash for his box. He is no sooner seated than a country couple appear upon the screen, at a well. Before they pump the pail full of water they indulge in a love-making scene. Uncle Josh thinks he recognizes his own daughter, jumps upon the stage, removes his coat and prepares to chastise the lover, and grabbing the moving picture screen he hauls it down, and to his great surprise finds a kinetoscope operator in the rear. The operator is made furious by Uncle Josh interrupting his show, and grappling with him they roll over and over upon the stage in an exciting ... Written by
This Edison trilogy, directed by the legendary Edwin S. Porter, is considered the first film(s) to have a sequel and in fact this is probably the earliest attempt to create a franchise series. It's also worth noting that the actor playing Uncle Josh, Charles Manley, was an actor at the Ford Theatre when President Lincoln was assassinated so there's an interesting bit of history that makes this series worth checking out. In Uncle Josh's Nightmare, the Uncle is in bed trying to fall asleep when the Devil appears in his room and tries to keep him up. Uncle Josh must battle the Devil in order to try and get some sleep before morning. This film is really no different than countless films made by George Melies but it still remains slightly entertaining since there's a lot more action in this film than what we saw in the Melies movies. The action lasts for the entire movie and keeps the film moving well. In the sequel Uncle Josh in a Spooky Hotel, our good guy goes to a hotel to try and get some sleep but as soon as he walks into the room a spirit begins causing him trouble. Once again, this film really isn't any different than what we've seen from Melies but, again, the movie remains entertaining throughout. The special effects of the spirit coming up isn't the greatest in the world but the film does hae enough charm to keep it going. In the final film, Uncle Josh at the Moving Picture Show, our good guy walks in to see a movie but then thinks what he's seeing on the screen is real. This last film in the series is certainly the weakest but it still contains a little charm but it needed more of the laughs to work. We've all heard stories of people walking into a movie for the first time and freaking out by what they saw and I was hoping this film would capture that but it didn't. In the end, this trilogy of films runs just under six minutes and is worth viewing for anyone interested in the early days of cinema.
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