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The Blue Bird (1918)

 -  Fantasy  -  31 March 1918 (USA)
6.7
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 400 users  
Reviews: 13 user | 9 critic

Two peasant children, Mytyl and Tyltyl, are led by Berylune, a fairy, to search for the Blue Bird of Happiness. Berylune gives Tyltyl a cap with a diamond setting, and when Tyltyl turns the... See full summary »

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Title: The Blue Bird (1918)

The Blue Bird (1918) on IMDb 6.7/10

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tula Belle ...
Robin Macdougall ...
Edwin E. Reed ...
Emma Lowry ...
William J. Gross ...
Florence Anderson ...
Edward Elkas ...
Katherine Bianchi ...
Lillian Cook ...
Gertrude McCoy ...
Lyn Donelson ...
Charles Ascot ...
Dog
Tom Corless ...
Cat
Mary Kennedy ...
Water
Eleanor Masters ...
Milk
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Storyline

Two peasant children, Mytyl and Tyltyl, are led by Berylune, a fairy, to search for the Blue Bird of Happiness. Berylune gives Tyltyl a cap with a diamond setting, and when Tyltyl turns the diamond, the children become aware of and conversant with the souls of a Dog and Cat, as well as of Fire, Water, Bread, Light, and other presumably inanimate things. The troupe thus sets off to find the elusive Blue Bird of Happiness. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

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Genres:

Fantasy

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Release Date:

31 March 1918 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El pájaro azul  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Trivia

The original Broadway production of "The Blue Bird" or "L'Oiseau Bleu" by Maurice Maeterlinck opened at the New Theatre (followed by the Majestic Theater) on October 1, 1910 and closed on January 21, 1911. Revivals were produced in 1911 and 1924. See more »

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Version of The Blue Bird (1976) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Overcoming Age
2 April 2005 | by See all my reviews

There seem to be only a few directors of cinema's infancy whose films are worth much attention; Maurice Tourneur is one of them. His films may not always be the most entertaining, but most of them that I've seen contain something that interests. "Alias Jimmy Valentine", for example, has major story problems, but the heist scene is outstandingly filmed for 1915. Here, too, the allegorical messages (the bluebird is happiness and such) are too sappy at times, but then there's an inspired shot or something else innovative.

The dark, flickering transfer of a deteriorated, bleeding print surely takes away from much of the visual qualities of this picture, but some of the photography and the color tinting shines through. Tourneur had some preparation for the dreamland journey of this film with the dream climax in "The Poor Little Rich Girl" of the previous year. The wonder and imagination of a child are well affected. Despite its age, the film's best element is still apparent; I think that is its awareness. Perhaps, most obviously, this film is comparable to "The Wizard of Oz" (1939), but more so to the 1914 trilogy, which Baum produced. The animal costumes are especially reminiscent, as are the cheap, but nice-looking backdrops and sets. Showing even more awareness are the trick shots in the way of a Méliès fantasy and the final shot where the boy turns to the camera and directly addresses the audience concerning the film's parable. So, to an extent, Tourneur overcomes the wear of age and the kiddy bluntness of the allegory.


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