7.1/10
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3 user 3 critic

Lyrisch nitraat (1991)

This film is a compilation of scenes from silent films made between 1905 and 1915 that sat in storage in an Amsterdam cinema for many years. The title refers to the deteriorating nitrate ... See full summary »

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Anni Timm ... (archive footage) (as Anny Timm)
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This film is a compilation of scenes from silent films made between 1905 and 1915 that sat in storage in an Amsterdam cinema for many years. The title refers to the deteriorating nitrate film stock used in these films. Written by Erik Gregersen <erik@astro.as.utexas.edu>

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Documentary

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11 October 1991 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Lyrical Nitrate  »

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1.37 : 1
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Trivia

The suspended monorail depicted in the film is the Wuppertal Suspension Railway, in Wuppertal, Germany. Built around 1900, it is still in use today and is a major civic attraction. This same monorail also features prominently in the film The Princess and the Warrior (2000). See more »

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Edited from Alexandra (1915) See more »

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Moments of brilliance in an other wise dull film
26 August 2007 | by See all my reviews

This is another collection of clips from nitrate films spanning from 1905 to about 1912 that were found in a cinema in Denmark. Grouped together in subjects (LOOKING is a series of shots "through" telescopes or binoculars, DRAMATIS PERSONAE is introductory shots of actors, CHILDREN is self explanatory, DYING is the death of Christ in a religious film.) that sort of kind of has the structure of a film. The whole thing ends with GOODBYE which was scenes from a religious film on the Garden of Eden that has been all but obliterated by the decay of the film. With in the film there are some hypnotic travel films, a wonderful series of shots of a railway that runs on tracks over the cars and what maybe the only surviving snippets of a woman named Lydia Borelli who is a stunning beauty and seemingly great actress.

The problem is that the film doesn't add up to much. To be certain the film has some stunning pieces, and at times the marriage of image and music transcend the whole and become something special, but for the most part the sequences are simply a series of disconnected shots grouped together. The effect is sleep inducing and aside for the odd moment or piece of film I was bored to tears. Decasia, another film that uses nitrate film for different effect (all of the footage there is decaying resulting in an almost alien landscape) is much better since its use of decay forces you to work with the film


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