An elderly gentleman in a silk hat sits on a stool in front of a store on the main street of town. He has a telescope that he focuses on the ankle of a young woman who is a short distance ... See full summary »
A gardener is watering his flowers, when a mischievous boy sneaks up behind his back, and puts a foot on the water hose. The gardener is surprised, and looks into the nozzle to find out why... See full summary »
Wintertime in Lyons. About a dozen people, men and women, are having a snowball fight in the middle of a tree-lined street. The cyclist coming along the road becomes the target of ... See full summary »
A lad from a butcher shop is carrying a tray laden with a roast or a leg of lamb. A hobo grabs it and runs. The boy gives chase, joined by dogs, as neighbors watch the spectacle. The hobo ... See full summary »
Firefighters ring for help, and here comes the ladder cart; they hitch a horse to it. A second horse-drawn truck joins the first, and they head down the street to a house fire. Inside a man... See full summary »
As the camera looks down an open road, a horse and carriage approaches, and passes by to one side of the field of view. Soon afterwards, an automobile comes up the road, straight towards ... See full summary »
Here is a most novel picture. A prominent actor with wonderful talent for facial contortion is standing some distance from the camera. As the film is set in motion, he walks toward the lens until his head grows into enormous proportions. He then stands so close to the camera that every wrinkle in his face, and in fact, the pores of his skin are plainly shown and greatly magnified. As he comes closer to the lens he opens his mouth wide, and is biting at the instrument all the while. He is then seen to swallow the camera, operator and all. He is next seen backing away from the instrument, smacking lips and rubbing his stomach in great glee. Very funny and a great hit. Written by
Certainly the most memorable motion picture of 1901? (I say this having not seen all of Melies' output so I may be talking out of my butt there). Here's what happens in one minute: a man is photographed from afar and looks shy: he doesn't want to be on camera, or to come any closer. But he's told over and over to come, so finally he does. In what I should think is one of the first (if not just the first) extreme close-ups in cinema's young history, the man comes close, and his lips fill the frame... until his mouth opens and SWALLOWS THE CAMERAMAN AND HIS CAMERA!
This is an unexpectedly funny and strange movie that starts as one thing and becomes something else. It exists in part to show off how this technique works - you don't have to be the Lumiere and film one thing from a static shot - you can have a subject come closer and closer to the camera, adjust the focus, and then be eaten alive! But seriously, this is also a short that has a beginning, middle and end - hell, it even has a pay-off. It's a wonderful little short that should be shown in film schools if nothing else as example of how do this *this* and make it cinematic for a joke.
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