Une histoire du cinéma français I - The pioneers years 1880-1918

by limguela | created - 03 Sep 2015 | updated - 10 months ago | Public

An exhaustive history of French cinema coordinated by Claude Beylie.

1st Part

2 chapters: The Lumière years and the pionneers years.

Missing films:

  • Ballet du feu (Jacques Ducom et Edmond Floury - 1896 - Gaumont)
  • La Biche au bois (Jacques Ducom et Edmond Floury - 1896 - Gaumont)
  • Les Cloches de Corneville (Alice Guy - Gaumont)
  • Le Triomphe de la République (Victor Jasset et Georges Hatot)
  • Un homme aimanté, Romeo Bosetti 1907
  • Dans la série des Zigomar : Le Maître invisible, Zigomar et la femme rousse
  • Balaoo et Protéa, 1913
  • Dranem amoureux de Cléopâtre, Roger Lion 1916
  • Série La Vie drôle avec Marcel Lévesque,dir. Louis Feuillade 1913


The few entries after 1918 are thematic mentions (mostly an actor or a director).

Full list

The 6 chapters: Une histoire du cinéma français I - The pioneers years 1880-1918 Une histoire du cinéma français II - Les "années folles" and the magnificent years 19-39 Une histoire du cinéma français III - The noir years and grey years 40-59 Une histoire du cinéma français IV - The breakdown years 60-79 Une histoire du cinéma français V - Today years 80-2000 Une histoire du cinéma français VI - Short films & Animated films

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1. Pauvre Pierrot (1892)

4 min | Animation, Comedy, Short

One night, Arlequin come to see his lover Colombine. But then Pierrot knocks at the door and Colombine and Arlequin hide. Pierrot starts singing but Arlequin scares him and the poor man goes away.

Director: Émile Reynaud

Votes: 1,023

2. Autour d'une cabine (1894)

2 min | Animation, Short

Pre-cinematograph colour animation of a woman and man at the beach.

Director: Émile Reynaud

Votes: 648

3. Employees Leaving the Lumière Factory (1895)

Not Rated | 1 min | Documentary, Short

A man opens the big gates to the Lumière factory. Through the gateway and a smaller doorway beside it, workers are streaming out, turning either left or right. Most of them are women in ... See full summary »

Director: Louis Lumière

Votes: 5,093

4. Cordeliers' Square in Lyon (1895)

1 min | Documentary, Short

A stationary camera looks across the boulevard at a diagonal toward one corner of Lyon's Cordeliers' Square. It's a long shot, with a great deal of depth of focus. We can see the sky and ... See full summary »

Director: Louis Lumière

Votes: 763

5. Baby's Dinner (1895)

1 min | Documentary, Short

As part of a maiden public film screening at the Salon Indien, on December 28, in Paris, Auguste Lumière pivots the centre of attention around his baby daughter, as he tries to feed her from a spoon.

Director: Louis Lumière | Stars: Auguste Lumière, Mrs. Auguste Lumiere, Andrée Lumière

Votes: 2,437

6. The Sea (1895)

1 min | Documentary, Short

Several little boys run along a pier, then jump into the ocean.

Director: Louis Lumière

Votes: 922

7. The Messers. Lumière at Cards (1896)

1 min | Documentary, Short

Two men play cards, as a third watches and a waiter brings drinks. The third man pours drinks as the waiter laughs.

Director: Louis Lumière | Stars: Antoine Féraud, Antoine Lumière, Félicien Trewey, Alphonse Winckler

Votes: 1,126

8. Childish Quarrel (1896)

Not Rated | 1 min | Documentary, Short

"Two babies are shown seated in high chairs and apparently enjoying themselves. Suddenly one snatches a toy from the other, and they indulge in hair-pulling."

Director: Louis Lumière | Stars: Andrée Lumière, Suzanne Lumière

Votes: 723

9. Concert (1896)

1 min | Short

On the terrace, a small concert which consists of a man playing the violin, two women at a piano, and another woman who sings, play a lovely tune.

Director: Louis Lumière | Stars: André Honnorat, Jeanne Koehler, Mrs. Auguste Lumiere, Rose Lumière

Votes: 63

10. The Arrival of a Train (1896)

Not Rated | 1 min | Documentary, Short

A train arrives at La Ciotat station.

Directors: Auguste Lumière, Louis Lumière | Stars: Madeleine Koehler, Marcel Koehler, Mrs. Auguste Lumiere, Jeanne-Joséphine Lumière

Votes: 8,522

Mais aussi les vues de NY, Boston, Chicago, etc.

12. Tables Turned on the Gardener (1895)

Not Rated | 1 min | Comedy, Short

A gardener is watering his flowers, when a mischievous boy sneaks up behind his back, and puts a foot on the water hose. The gardener is surprised, and looks into the nozzle to find out why... See full summary »

Director: Louis Lumière | Stars: François Clerc, Benoît Duval

Votes: 3,705

14. Exécution de Jeanne d'Arc (1898)

1 min | Short, Drama, History

Add a Plot

Director: Georges Hatot

Votes: 88

Sous le titre, la Mort de Jeanne d'Arc

18. Une partie de cartes (1896)

Not Rated | 1 min | Short, Biography

In what is considered to be the first remake in the history of cinema, the grand French director, Georges Méliès, directs his very first short film, influenced by the Lumière Brothers' original story in "Partie d'écarté (1896)".

Director: Georges Méliès | Stars: Octavie Huvier, Gaston Méliès, Georges Méliès, Georgette Méliès

Votes: 704

Méliès

19. The Conjuring of a Woman at the House of Robert Houdin (1896)

1 min | Short, Horror

As an elegant maestro of mirage and delusion drapes his beautiful female assistant with a gauzy textile, much to our amazement, the lady vanishes into thin air.

Director: Georges Méliès | Stars: Jehanne d'Alcy, Georges Méliès

Votes: 1,206

20. The Famous Box Trick (1898)

Not Rated | 1 min | Short, Fantasy

From the depths of a plain wooden box, a skilful conjurer materializes a lively boy in a clown suit. Next, he takes a heavy battle-axe. What are his intentions?

Director: Georges Méliès | Star: Georges Méliès

Votes: 371

21. The Astronomer's Dream; or, The Man in the Moon (1898)

Not Rated | 3 min | Short, Comedy, Fantasy

An astronomer falls asleep and has a strange dream involving a fairy queen and the Moon.

Director: Georges Méliès | Stars: Jehanne d'Alcy, Georges Méliès

Votes: 2,657

Rêve de l'astronome

22. Visite sous-marine du Maine (1898)

1 min | Short, Drama, News

The battleship Maine is blown up in Havana harbour during the Spanish-American War.

Director: Georges Méliès

Votes: 378

23. L'affaire Dreyfus (1899)

13 min | Short, Biography, Drama

Dramatized re-enactments of the events of the Dreyfus-affair from 1894 to 1899.

Director: Georges Méliès | Star: Georges Méliès

Votes: 400

24. The One-Man Band (1900)

Not Rated | 2 min | Short, Comedy

A band-leader assembles an orchestra by mystifying means.

Director: Georges Méliès | Star: Georges Méliès

Votes: 1,737

Pathé

28. La fée aux choux (1896)

1 min | Short, Family, Fantasy

The first film directed by a female director, "The Cabbage Fairy" presents a brief fantasy tale involving a strange fairy who can produce and deliver babies coming out of cabbages. Gently ... See full summary »

Director: Alice Guy | Stars: Alice Guy, Germaine Serand, Yvonne Serand

Votes: 769

Alice Guy (autres films Gaumont cités : Ballet du feu, La Biche au bois (Jacques Ducom et Edmond Floury).

29. A Trip to the Moon (1902)

TV-G | 13 min | Short, Adventure, Fantasy

A group of astronomers go on an expedition to the Moon.

Director: Georges Méliès | Stars: Georges Méliès, Victor André, Bleuette Bernon, Brunnet

Votes: 36,781

30. The Music Lover (1903)

3 min | Short, Comedy, Music

The leader of a marching band demonstrates an unusual way of writing music.

Director: Georges Méliès | Star: Georges Méliès

Votes: 1,477

31. Fairyland: A Kingdom of Fairies (1903)

Not Rated | 16 min | Short, Adventure, Fantasy

In this spectacular free adaptation of the popular theatre play "La Biche au Bois", the valiant Prince Bel-Azor pursues a baleful old witch to her impregnable castle, to save the beautiful young Princess Azurine.

Director: Georges Méliès | Stars: Georges Méliès, Marguerite Thévenard, Bleuette Bernon, André Deed

Votes: 914

32. Le voyage à travers l'impossible (1904)

Not Rated | 24 min | Short, Adventure, Fantasy

Using every known means of transportation, several savants from the Geographic Society undertake a journey through the Alps to the Sun which finishes under the sea.

Director: Georges Méliès | Stars: Georges Méliès, Fernande Albany, Jehanne d'Alcy, May de Lavergne

Votes: 2,689

33. The Devilish Tenant (1909)

6 min | Short, Comedy

A man rents an apartment and furnishes it in remarkable fashion.

Director: Georges Méliès | Stars: Charles Claudel, Octavie Huvier, François Lallement, André Méliès

Votes: 1,372

34. À la conquête du pôle (1912)

Not Rated | 33 min | Short, Adventure, Sci-Fi

Scientists from all over the world are meeting to discuss the best way to reach the North Pole. Professor Maboul demonstrates for them the innovative equipment that he has designed for the ... See full summary »

Director: Georges Méliès | Stars: Georges Méliès, Fernande Albany

Votes: 662

36. The Birth, the Life and the Death of Christ (1906)

Not Rated | 33 min | Short, Biography, Drama

The life of Jesus Christ in 25 scenes.

Director: Alice Guy

Votes: 253

La Vie du Christ 1904 alice Guy

Zecca

Zecca

39. The Devil's Seven Castles (1904)

11 min | Short, Drama, Horror

Dissatisfied with his life, a desperate man decides to make an unholy pact with the Devil, ignoring the seven deadly sins.

Director: Ferdinand Zecca

Votes: 37

40. History of a Crime (1901)

5 min | Short, Crime, Drama

La cella di un condannato a morte. L'uomo sta dormendo e sogna il passato che lo ha portato in prigione : vita frenetica, cattive amicizie, alcolismo, l'assassinio di un cassiere di banca. ... See full summary »

Director: Ferdinand Zecca | Stars: Jean Liézer, Bretteau, Ferdinand Zecca

Votes: 485

42. The Strike (1904)

Short, Drama

During a strike, several workers are killed in a confrontation. The wife of one of them kills the factory owner. At her trial, the owner's son asks for mercy, knowing that his father was ... See full summary »

Director: Ferdinand Zecca

43. Down in the Coal Mines (1905)

Short, Drama

A father and son are working in a coal mine. An explosion occurs, which kills the son.

Directors: Lucien Nonguet, Ferdinand Zecca

Votes: 23

44. Scenes of Convict Life (1905)

8 min | Drama, Short

A prisoner attempts an escape from a brutal penal institution.

Director: Ferdinand Zecca

Votes: 13

46. Revolution in Russia (1906)

Not Rated | 4 min | Drama, Short

A dramatization of the uprising in Odessa, Russia in 1905: A ship's crew, tired of being mistreated, mutinies and takes over their ship. When they reach land, a sailor who died during the ... See full summary »

Director: Lucien Nonguet

Votes: 252

47. Napoleon Bonaparte (1903)

Short, Biography

At school in Brienne. On the bridge of Arcole. The campaign in Egypt. Passage of the St. Bernard Pass. Garden party in Malmaison.

Director: Lucien Nonguet

Votes: 5

48. Napoleon Bonaparte (1903)

Short, Biography

The Coronation. The battle of Austerlitz. Soldier sleeping during watch. The burning of Moscow. Waterloo. The Emperor's death.

Director: Lucien Nonguet

L’Épopée napoléonienne

49. Don Quichotte (1903)

Drama, Short

A self-proclaimed "knight" and his hapless squire travel the Spanish countryside, attacking "giants" that are really windmills in his attempt to win the love of the fair Dulcinea.

Directors: Lucien Nonguet, Ferdinand Zecca

Votes: 16

Les Aventures de Don Quichotte de la Manche