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Pacific 231 (1949)

7.0
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 147 users  
Reviews: 4 user | 2 critic

An engine moves from the roundhouse to a track where it couples with several passenger cars. At 2:10 in the afternoon, it starts a trip out of the station through the countryside to its ... See full summary »

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Title: Pacific 231 (1949)

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Storyline

An engine moves from the roundhouse to a track where it couples with several passenger cars. At 2:10 in the afternoon, it starts a trip out of the station through the countryside to its destination. The film consists of a montage of shots, some close up, of the engine and its gears and wheels. With the accompanying ambient sounds and an orchestral score, the emphasis is on the engine's power and speed. Parallel lines of multiple tracks, telephone wires, and trees confirm a careful composition. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Short | Music

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Release Date:

September 1949 (France)  »

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Sound Mix:

(Klangfilm)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

When the music first starts, the film shows the reverser lever being moved upward from neutral. However, the up position indicates reverse, as all the shots of the train going forward show the lever in the down position. See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Real Story ...
9 October 2006 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

The only comment on this experimental work from 1949 has it backwards. The film is based on the music, not the other way around. It's a nine minute illustration, Fantasia-like, of a piece which composer Arthur Honegger wrote in 1923.

This from the Wikipedia: "Pacific 231 is an orchestral work by Arthur Honegger, written in 1923. It is one of his most frequently performed works today.

The popular interpretation of the piece is that it depicts a steam locomotive, an interpretation that is supported by the title of the piece. Honegger, however, insisted that he wrote it as an exercise in building momentum while the tempo of the piece slows. He originally titled it Mouvement Symphonique, only giving it the name Pacific 231 after it was finished.

Nonetheless, Honegger was widely known as a train enthusiast, and once notably said: 'I have always loved locomotives passionately. For me they are living creatures and I love them as others love women or horses.'"

By the way, "Pacific 231" is one of Honeggar's most often played pieces and worth a good listen on its own.


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