Commemorates the centennial of American movies with a montage of clips and music scores from the most important movies of the century.

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Storyline

The first commercially available movie in the United States aired on Broadway in New York City on April 14, 1894. The footage shown there was viewed through a narrow slot in a former shoe store. This short film celebrates the first 100 years of American movies from that time. With certain themes often tying them together, clips from landmark American movies are shown in somewhat chronological order, the clips played over an orchestral score, which is often itself based on landmark movie scores. Seventeen movies are specially mentioned, these seventeen perhaps not the best or most influential movies, but rather ones that provide insight to movies from that era. Written by Huggo

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Documentary | Short

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Chuck Workman also directed the similar short Precious Images (1986). See more »

Crazy Credits

Turner Entertainment gratefully acknowledges the distributors, production organizations, labor organizations, and the many individuals whose talent and gracious assistance made this 100th Anniversary celebration possible. See more »

Connections

Features Dames (1934) See more »

Soundtracks

On the Waterfront
(uncredited)
Composed by Leonard Bernstein
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Captures the magic of the movies through 100 years of American film
25 December 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This film was made to commemorate the development of film in the United States, thus you won't see any clips from foreign films in it - that was not what it was intended to do, on the 100th anniversary of the first film exhibition in the United States on April 14, 1894. That 100th anniversary is also the day that Turner Classic Movies began broadcasting - April 14, 1994 - and I believe this short was one of the first shorts broadcast on that channel. It consists entirely of very short film clips in rough chronological order with musical accompaniment that very much conveys the feeling of each era in film. There is no narration other than the words of the actors and actresses in the films in the short. Anything more would have ruined the magic that is this short.

Produced by Turner Broadcasting Company, you'll see a heavy dose of the films that Ted Turner owned at the time - the RKO library, the pre-1986 MGM library, and the pre-1949 Warner Brothers library. Also, many silent films are and were in the public domain, so clips of very early films were possible. However, just about every significant film made up to 1994 is present, including films Turner did not own such as "It's A Wonderful Life", "Patton", "Star Wars", and "Schindler's List" at the very end, which actually won the Best Picture award for 1993.

In some ways I'd like this short to be updated to include the last twenty years of film, but then they would have to ruin that perfect ending with the films of 1993 being crosscut with the one hundred year old footage of the trolley cars. I highly recommend this short - if you love film it will give you goosebumps.


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