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The Wonderful Living Fan (1904)

Le merveilleux éventail vivant (original title)
The king of France receives a marvelous fan. The fan opens to reveal plain lace. This lace becomes pictures of women which then come to life an move in unison as their clothing changes.

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Storyline

As a conjurer awaits an audience, a procession announces the arrival of a royal representative, carried in a sedan chair, to see him. The conjurer then has a large box brought in. It is opened, revealing a very large folding fan. When the fan is spread out, the designs on it begin to change and move. And this is far from the last of the surprises that the conjurer has in store. Written by Snow Leopard

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Short | Fantasy

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7 May 1904 (USA)  »

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The Wonderful Living Fan  »

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1.33 : 1
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Not one of Melies' Best
8 December 2008 | by (www.2020-movie-reviews.com) – See all my reviews

Perhaps efforts like this were a precursor of Melies eventual fate as a filmmaker. The French magician had already made the stupendous Le Voyage dans la lune the previous year, and this stage-bound effort is a definite step backward in terms of both inventiveness and technique. There's no real story to speak of, just a magic trick in which a giant fan is transformed into a group of females for the delight of the King of France. The stop-motion trickery is fairly obvious, but still manages to retain a certain charm missing from today's CGI effects. The print of this film was astonishingly clean and pristine. Probably one for Melies completists only.


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