The first moving shot, created by a stationary camera on a gondola in Panorama du Grand Canal vu d'un Bateau, was filmed by Alexandre Promio for Louis Lumiere. Filming Locations: Venice, Veneto, Italy. Release Date: 1896 (France).
A household gardener is outside watering the garden. Unknown to him, the son of another servant sneaks up behind him and steps on the hose, stopping the flow of water. The befuddled ... See full summary »
There's a famous magazine photograph -- well, it's famous in Britain, at any rate -- that was published in Picture Post in 1943. Titled 'Dancing the Lambeth Walk', it depicts a girl about nine years old in an East End street, wearing a woman's high-heeled shoes and spoofing an elegant dancer while other street urchins of the same age laugh at her la-di-dah efforts.
I was reminded of that photo when I saw this brief film, shot in London almost half a century earlier. We see three girls about the same age as that Lambeth Walker, or perhaps just a bit older, performing an elaborate dance in the street while a hurdy-gurdy plays nearby. These girls are wearing elaborate Victorian hats and frocks, yet while they dance they raise their skirts to display their high-buttoned shoes. The crossroads shown here -- as well as the people in the film, and their clothing -- are all clearly more genteel than the East End neighbourhood in that Picture Post photo.
These girls are not extemporising; it's clear that they're performing some dance which they've carefully rehearsed. I wish I could recognise the dance; it might help if I knew what music was playing in this silent film. Although this movie is very brief, it gives us a fascinating glimpse of girls' clothing and shoes of the time period, and the dance may have some historic value as well. My rating for this: 9 out of 10.
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