1. THE ANNUNCIATION. The Angel of the Lord appears to Mary, announcing the birth of a child, which shall be called the "Son of God." 2. THE STRANGE STAR. Led by the light of the strange new... See full summary »
1. THE ANNUNCIATION. The Angel of the Lord appears to Mary, announcing the birth of a child, which shall be called the "Son of God." 2. THE STRANGE STAR. Led by the light of the strange new star, the three wise men of the East journey to Bethlehem in search of the holy child, whose birth has been foretold to them. They are followed by a large retinue of servants and a train of camels, donkeys, sheep, etc., forming in all an impressive caravan. 3. THE ADORATION OF THE WISE MEN. The wise men and the shepherds enter the lowly stable and kneel at the feet of Mary, who holds in her arms the new-born babe. Joseph stands near and watches the touching scene. 4. FLIGHT INTO EGYPT. Through the lonely Egyptian desert Mary and Joseph flee to a place of safety to preserve the life of the infant Jesus. Arriving at the famous Sphinx, Mary finds shelter for the night, while Joseph collects wood for the fire. 5. JESUS AND THE DOCTORS. The doctors and sages are engaged in a learned discussion, when ... Written by
This film must rank as one of the most important of its time, even though it doesn't occupy the same place in the public consciousness as other early landmarks such as Melies' Voyage to the Moon and Porter's The Great Train Robbery. At 44 minutes long it is one (if not the) earliest example of a near-feature length film, even though it was often sold as individual scenes so that many audiences in 1903 never actually got to see the film in its entirety the way we do today. The use of stencil colouring is effective and enlivens what otherwise becomes a rather dull series of tableaux from the life of Jesus, all filmed with a static camera that captures the 'exaggerated gesture' school of acting that was considered outdated long before the age of the silent movie was over.
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