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1896 (UK)  »

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Derby Day
28 May 2009 | by (www.2020-movie-reviews.com) – See all my reviews

This film is perhaps only an existing fragment of a longer version because everything seems to be over when we - in Steve Ryder-speak - join the action. We see a handful of horses cantering past the camera's vantage point in the first half of the film and it's clear that the race has actually been run and all we are watching is the horses slowing down after passing the winning post. As soon as they've past the crowd swarm onto the race track for some reason, as if they everybody want to be on the side that they're not on and therein may lie a great philosophical statement on the part of the filmmakers... or maybe not. The film's grainy and there's not a lot to see, but it has historical significance as one of the earliest extant British films and an example of the brief and ill-fated collaboration between British pioneers R. W. Paul and Birt Acres.


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