Opens with a magician compressing something white in his hands. It transforms into a living dove. which is quickly deposited into a box sitting on a table behind the magician. In short ...
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In this scene is shown a magician behind an ordinary table, upon which he suddenly and mysteriously causes to appear a large box, into which he leaps. The sides of the box fall to the ... See full summary »
A weary traveler stops at an inn along the way to get a good night's sleep, but his rest is interrupted by odd happenings when he gets to his room--beds vanishing and re-appearing, candles ... See full summary »
One of the greatest of black art pictures. The conjurer appears before the audience, with his head in its proper place. He then removes his head, and throwing it in the air, it appears on ... See full summary »
The scene opens in an artist's studio where the unfinished statue of William Tell stands upon a pedestal. A clown appears and sticks a clay arm and clay head on the statue, thus completing ... See full summary »
The conjurer appears at a blackboard and shows the head of a knight on it. He seizes the picture of the head, removes it from the blackboard, and it turns into life and bows and smiles ... See full summary »
A man sleeps fitfully then dreams that a lovely woman is sitting at the foot of his bed. He reaches to embrace her and she becomes a minstrel, then Pierrot. The clown gestures to the moon ... See full summary »
Opens with a magician compressing something white in his hands. It transforms into a living dove. which is quickly deposited into a box sitting on a table behind the magician. In short order several other articles are tossed into the box out of which springs a young boy in clown makeup. The magician helps the boy down then places him atop another small box. He then picks up an executioners ax and appears to be going to slice the boy lengthwise. Instead, as the ax touches him the boy turns into twins! The magician then uses his mystical powers to make first one and then the other disappear. To prove they haven't gone into the box, he destroys it then causes the boy to reappear on top of one of the pieces. .Hoisting the child one more time he makes him transform into a French and an American flag which the magician waves triumphantly. But for the big finish he hops onto the table, bows his head and disappears only to reappear through a stage door for one final bow Written by
Melies started out as a stage magician, but he quickly learned and invented a lot of film magic too, which he uses to great and good effect in this effort: the one where he slices the boy in half is wonderful. It's a thirty-second magic act, little more, but must have been a real jaw-dropper when originally shown.
This is one of the many previously lost or infrequently seen Melies pictures that have been made available by Serge Bromberg, David Shepherd and a myriad of other hands in the newly issued DVD set GEORGES MELIES: FIRST WIZARD OF CINEMA. Required viewing for anyone interested in the history of movies ..... and a lot of fun.
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