You are browsing the archive for Film: 1900s.

The Monster (1903)

- January 16, 2014 in collections, Digital Copy: No Additional Rights, early film, egypt, Film: 1900s, Films, Films: Fantasy, Films: Short, Georges Méliès, monsters, Underlying Work: PD Worldwide

A 1903 film directed by French filmmaker Georges Méliès and, as is common with his films, starring the man himself. The story centres on the chaotic, and ultimately futile, attempt to bring a dead Egyptian Princess back to life.

Tommy Burns knocking out Bill Squires (1907)

- October 24, 2013 in bill squires, boxing, collections, Digital Copy: No Additional Rights, Film: 1900s, Films, Films: Clip, Films: Documentary, heavyweight, Internet Archive, knockout, Library of Congress, miles brothers, sport, tommy burns, Underlying Work: PD U.S.

A Miles Brothers film of the legendary heavyweight prize boxing match between Bill Squires and Tommy Burns, played out at Ocean View, California, on July 4th 1907. Weighing in at a measly 178 pounds, the 5’7″ Canadian Burns was a 10-1 underdog against Australia’s Bill Squires who was coming off a 20 consecutive knockout streak. To the shock of all present, this mismatch came to an unexpected end in the first round when Burns KO’d Squires in one of the fastest knockouts in the history of boxing up to that point. The fight was labeled the “shortest and fiercest contest on record”. Burns would go on to secure a reputation for knocking out the biggest men in the sport. He wrote, in a book brought out in 1908, about how the face of boxing was changing, no longer being about brute strength but speed: “In modern boxing speed is nearly everything, and I have always considered my success to be primarily due to the fact that lacrosse and hockey had taught me to be spry and smart on my feet before I ever thought of donning a pair of boxing gloves.” Housed at: Internet Archive | From: The Library of […]

Émile Cohl’s Fantasmagorie (1908)

- September 26, 2013 in animation, collections, Digital Copy: Attribution, early animation, early cartoon, Émile Cohl, Film: 1900s, Films, Films: Animation, Films: Clip, Internet Archive, Underlying Work: PD Worldwide

An animated film by French caricaturist, cartoonist and animator Émile Cohl. It is one of the earliest examples of hand-drawn animation, and considered by many film historians to be the very first animated cartoon.

Scrooge, or, Marley’s Ghost (1901)

- December 10, 2012 in a christmas carol, charles dickens, christmas, collections, early film, Film: 1900s, Films, Films: Drama, Films: Fantasy, Films: Short, scrooge

Scrooge, or, Marley’s Ghost, directed by Walter R. Booth, is the oldest known film adaptation of Charles Dickens’ 1843 novel A Christmas Carol – featuring the miserly Ebeneezer Scrooge confronted by Marley’s ghost and given by visions of Christmas Past, Present and Future. The film, “although somewhat flat and stage-bound to modern eyes,” according to Michael Brooke of BFI Screenonline, “was an ambitious undertaking at the time,” as, “not only did it attempt to tell an 80 page story in five minutes, but it featured impressive trick effects, superimposing Marley’s face over the door knocker and the scenes from his youth over a black curtain in Scrooge’s bedroom.” It was presented in ‘Twelve Tableaux’ or scenes and is thought to contain the first ever use of intertitles in a film. (Wikipedia) Download from Internet Archive Sign up to get our free fortnightly newsletter which shall deliver direct to your inbox the latest brand new article and a digest of the most recent collection items. Simply add your details to the form below and click the link you receive via email to confirm your subscription!

A Wake in Hell’s Kitchen (1903)

- October 27, 2012 in coffin, collections, corpse, Film: 1900s, Films, Films: Clip, Films: Comedy

Strange little short from the American Mutoscope & Biograph Co, housed at the Library of Congress. From Biograph picture catalogue, Nov. 1902 [MI], p. 39: This scene is laid in the parlor of a New York tenement. Two watchers at the wake are smoking and drinking, while the widow is weeping over the coffin. The attention of the three is attracted for an instant, and the supposed corpse rises up, drinks all the beer in the pitcher which is standing on a table nearby, and lies down in the coffin again. The mourners return, and seeing that the beer is gone, engage in a controversy over it. During the scrap the corpse jumps out of the coffin and takes part in the melee. Download from Library of Congress Note this film is in the public domain in the US, but may not be in other jurisdictions. Please check its status in your jurisdiction before re-using. Sign up to get our free fortnightly newsletter which shall deliver direct to your inbox the latest brand new article and a digest of the most recent collection items. Simply add your details to the form below and click the link you receive via email [...]

San Francisco Earthquake Aftermath (1906)

- June 10, 2012 in 1906, earthquake, Film: 1900s, Films, Films: Documentary, Films: Short, non-article, san francisco



Haunting footage on the streets of San Francisco after the 1906 earthquake which devastated much of the city, left more than 300,000 people homeless and killed over 3000. The earthquake was the first natural disaster of its magnitude to be documented by photography and motion picture footage. This film appears to be made by amateurs who attached a camera to a car driven around the city. Noticeable is the huge amount of people out sightseeing amid the rubble. See also this Edison newsreel showing scenes of the rescue operation and clearup. And see “A Trip Down Market Street” which shows the streets of San Francisco only 6 days prior to when the earthquake hit.

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Note this film is in the public domain in the US, but may not be in other jurisdictions. Please check its status in your jurisdiction before re-using.










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Passion and Death of Christ (1903)

- April 6, 2012 in crucifixion, easter, Ferdinand Zecca, Film: 1900s, Films, Films: Drama, Films: Silent, jesus, La Vie et la passion de Jesus Christ, Lucien Nonguet, non-article, passion, resurrection



From Internet Archive: La Vie et la passion de Jesus Christ is a 1903 French silent film directed by Lucien Nonguet and Ferdinand Zecca, and is believed to be the first feature film to have colorized sequences. Colorization was achieved using the Pathecolor/Pathechrome stencil-based film tinting process, which had been invented around 1903 by Pathe Freres, one of the most important and innovative film companies in history. The film itself is a straightforward telling of the story of Jesus Christ, but does include some events usually omitted in films about Christ, like the Transfiguration. La Vie is filmed using a single camera mostly kept still in front of the set and capturing the actors and action as it unfolds. The only known cast members are Madame Moreau as Virgin Mary and Monsieur Moreau as Joseph.

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Note this film is in the public domain in the US, but may not be in other jurisdictions. Please check its status in your jurisdiction before re-using.










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