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A Narrow Escape (1908)

Le médecin du château (original title)
Two criminals lure a doctor away from his home with a phony note about a child's illness. After the doctor rushes off, the criminals break into his house and menace his wife and child. By ... See full summary »
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Two criminals lure a doctor away from his home with a phony note about a child's illness. After the doctor rushes off, the criminals break into his house and menace his wife and child. By the time the doctor realizes what has happened, his family faces a desperate situation. Written by Snow Leopard

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Short | Drama

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28 March 1908 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Narrow Escape  »

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1.33 : 1
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Remade as An Unseen Enemy (1912) See more »

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User Reviews

Which came first - The Villa or the Château?
19 June 2009 | by See all my reviews

While this film might seem run of the mill by today's standards, it's a good example of how far the cinema had progressed in just five years. The sets in this film, while still fairly plain, look like real rooms rather than obviously painted backdrops; the film makes extensive use of cross-cutting one year before D. W. Griffith's The Lonely Villa, a similar story which also makes use of cross-cutting to build suspense and which is a technique that many historians have claimed was invented by Griffith. Despite no intertitles or dialogue, the plot (admittedly simple) is easy to follow and does build up to quite an exciting 'race against time' finale.

On a lighter note, look out for Pathe's rooster logo cleverly woven into the scenes to prevent fraudulent copying by rival filmmakers. Placing a logo in the corner of the screen was no longer enough to prevent duping by rivals in 1908, so filmmakers had to go to ever more inventive lengths to discourage piracy. Also, a question: why do the mother and small boy pile furniture in front of doors that open outwards (away from the piles of furniture)?


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