You are browsing the archive for Films: Fantasy.

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.

George Méliès’ Temptation of St. Anthony (1898)

- March 8, 2013 in collections, Films, Films: 19th Century, Films: Clip, Films: Drama, Films: Fantasy, Georges Méliès, Temptation of St. Anthony

George Méliès’ short retelling of the temptation of Saint Anthony (La tentation de Saint-Antoine), with the temptations taking the form of the unexpected and persistent appearance of various scantily clad women. Although not as technically epic as his earlier masterpieces it nonetheless marks an advance in terms of subject matter, being one of the earliest films to tackle an explicitly religious theme. In this respect, as Film Journal comments, “Méliès proves himself the ancestor of Cecil B. DeMille and Franco Zeffirelli, whose own religious epics offer a similar blend of the solemn and the kitschy”. The supernatural temptations reportedly faced by Saint Anthony during his sojourn in the Egyptian desert, have been an often-repeated subject in the history of art and literature. Colin Dickey’s excellent article for The Public Domain Review explores how Gustave Flaubert spent nearly thirty years working on a surreal and largely ‘unreadable’ retelling of the story and how it was only in the dark and compelling illustrations of Odilon Redon, made years later, that Flaubert’s strangest work finally came to life. Read it here: http://publicdomainreview.org/2013/03/07/the-redemption-of-saint-anthony/ Download from Internet Archive – Part of the wonderful and comprehensive George Méliès Collection. DONATE NOW TO SAVE THE PUBLIC DOMAIN [...]

Design for Dreaming (1956)

- January 21, 2013 in 50s, advertisements, cars, collections, Films, Films: 1950s, Films: Fantasy, Films: Short, fridges, general motors, Populuxe, prelinger archives, retro-future, retrofuturism

Over the top 1950s “Populuxe” advertisement for General Motors, set at their 1956 Motors Motorama. A woman falls asleep and dreams of a glorious future of perfect products, including a variety of shiny futuristic dream cars and Frigidaire’s fully automated “Kitchen of the Future.” The star of the story is played by dancer and choreographer Tad Tadlock. The film has over the years become a popular symbol of 50s consumerist culture and was featured extensively in the BBC documentary series Pandora’s Box by Adam Curtis. Some footage was also used in the music video for Peter Gabriel’s 1987 single “In Your Eyes”, Rush’s 1989 music video for “Superconductor”, a 1989 commercial for the Nintendo Game Boy game Super Mario Land, and a 1994 commercial for Power Macintosh. Part of the film, with dialogue, is played during the opening titles for The Hills Have Eyes. Some snippets (without dialogue) are played in the video watched by Michael Douglas during his physical in The Game and in the opening titles for The Stepford Wives. (Wikipedia) The film is downloadable at the Internet Archive, and is part of the Prelinger Archive. Note this film is in the public domain in the US, but [...]

Design for Dreaming (1956)

- January 21, 2013 in 50s, advertisements, cars, collections, Films, Films: 1950s, Films: Fantasy, Films: Short, fridges, general motors, Populuxe, prelinger archives, retro-future, retrofuturism

Over the top 1950s “Populuxe” advertisement for General Motors, set at their 1956 Motors Motorama. A woman falls asleep and dreams of a glorious future of perfect products, including a variety of shiny futuristic dream cars and Frigidaire’s fully automated “Kitchen of the Future.” The star of the story is played by dancer and choreographer Tad Tadlock. The film has over the years become a popular symbol of 50s consumerist culture and was featured extensively in the BBC documentary series Pandora’s Box by Adam Curtis. It also appears in its entirety with an amusing “commentary” as a short feature in a fifth-season episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000. Some footage was also used in the music video for Peter Gabriel’s 1987 single “In Your Eyes”, Rush’s 1989 music video for “Superconductor”, a 1989 commercial for the Nintendo Game Boy game Super Mario Land, and a 1994 commercial for Power Macintosh. Part of the film, with dialogue, is played during the opening titles for The Hills Have Eyes. Some snippets (without dialogue) are played in the video watched by Michael Douglas during his physical in The Game and in the opening titles for The Stepford Wives. (Wikipedia) The film is downloadable [...]

Santa Claus Conquers the Martians (1964)

- December 18, 2012 in aliens, christmas, collections, father christmas, Films, Films: 1960s, Films: Fantasy, Films: Sci-Fi, Films: Talkie, martians, santa claus, science fiction

Santa Claus Conquers the Martians is a 1964 science fiction film that regularly appears on lists of the worst films ever made. It is regularly featured in the “bottom 100″ list on the Internet Movie Database, and was featured in an episode of the 1986 syndicated series, the Canned Film Festival. It was directed by Nicholas Webster, and it stars John Call as Santa Claus. It also includes an 8-year-old Pia Zadora playing the role of one of the Martian children. The film took on newfound fame in the 1990s after being featured on an episode of the comedy series Mystery Science Theater 3000. It became a holiday staple on the Comedy Central cable channel in the years following its 1991 premiere. It has since found new life again in the 2000s having been riffed by Cinematic Titanic. The movie was also featured on the current run of “Elvira’s Movie Macabre.” The plot? In a bid to make disgruntled Martian children happier, Martians kidnap Santa from Earth… (Wikipedia) Download from Internet Archive 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 [...]

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!

Tarzan of the Apes (1918)

- September 17, 2012 in Films, Films: 1910s, Films: Fantasy, Films: Silent, non-article, tarzan



The very first Tarzan film ever made, based on Edgar Rice Burroughs’ original novel Tarzan of the Apes of only 4 years earlier. The film is directed by Scott Sidney and stars Elmo Lincoln, Enid Markey, George B. French and Gordon Griffith. It is considered the most faithful to the novel of all the film adaptations, though only tells the first part of the novel, the remainder becoming the basis for the sequel, The Romance of Tarzan (also from 1918 but directed by Wilfred Lucas).

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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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Rip Van Winkle (1896)

- May 12, 2012 in Films, Films: 19th Century, Films: Fantasy, Films: Short, non-article

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The first film adaptation of Washington Irving’s “Rip Van Winkle”, a short story about a man who awakes after a 20 year long sleep to a huge white beard on his face and a much changed world. In this footage, Joseph Jefferson, the actor most associated with the character on the 19th century stage, makes a series of short films recreating scenes from his stage adaptation.

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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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    Alice in Wonderland (1915)

    - March 22, 2012 in alice in wonderland, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, Films, Films: 1910s, Films: Fantasy, Films: Silent, lewis carroll, non-article

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    1915 silent film adaptation of Lewis Carroll’s classic novel, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, directed and written by W.W. Young and starring Viola Savoy as Alice. This is a tinted and shorter cut of the film. There is an untinted longer version (though lower quality) here. Included above are two versions: the film without sound or the film with a nice soundtrack added by the original Internet Archive uploader (though be aware that the copyright info on the early vinyl recording used is unknown).

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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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