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Life of an American Policeman (1905)

A policeman has breakfast with his wife and children, and then prepares for the day's work. While on his beat, he finds and helps a lost child. Later, several officers try to save a woman ... See full summary »
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Cast

Credited cast:
Jennie Bartlett ...
Drowning Girl
Bert Conneally ...
Patrolman / Rescue Swimmer
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Storyline

A policeman has breakfast with his wife and children, and then prepares for the day's work. While on his beat, he finds and helps a lost child. Later, several officers try to save a woman who has attempted to drown herself. And there are some even more hazardous situations yet to come. Written by Snow Leopard

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Genres:

Drama | Short

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Details

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Release Date:

6 December 1905 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

En amerikansk Politimands Liv og Arbejdsdag  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Trivia

In December 1905, this movie was shown in New York City at two vaudeville benefits for the Police Relief Fund. See more »

Connections

Featured in Edison: The Invention of the Movies (2005) See more »

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User Reviews

Good Feature For Its Time & Genre
2 August 2005 | by See all my reviews

This is pretty good for its time and genre, combining suspense and human interest in depicting what the "Life Of An American Policeman" is like. It is one of a number of movies in what was a rather popular genre in the first decade of the 1900s, showing workers of various professions in typical situations, and simply by the nature of a police officer's job, it's one of the more action-oriented movies of the kind.

This movie is something of a companion piece for the 1903 Edison feature on firemen. As another commentator has perceptively pointed out, it's often easier to get audiences to sympathize with firemen than with policemen. But for its era, this movie is a good effort to overcome that.

As was normal for pictures of this kind, the story starts off with the policeman having a pleasant family breakfast with his wife and children, a simple scene with the simple intention of reminding the audience that the police officer is really just a person with a family, like everyone else. It makes it just a little more meaningful when you see the same character in action later on.

The scenes of the policeman and his fellow officers at work contain a pretty good variety of material, from helpful but routine duties to genuinely hazardous situations. Much of it was re-enacted from actual events, rather than being filmed 'live', but most of it has an authentic feel to it, and the nature of the material always keeps it interesting. More footage was shot than was used in the final film, and some of the additional footage is included in Kino's recently released collection of Edison movies.


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