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Moving Pictures: The History of Early Cinema
(Released July 2011)

  by Brian Manley  


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  1. The 'imponderable fluidity' of modernity: Georges Méliès and the architectural origins of cinema

    Brian R. Jacobson.

    Early Popular Visual Culture, Vol. 8, No. 2, May 2010, pp. 189-207.

    This essay situates the development of early 'glass house' film studios in the history of nineteenth-century glass-and-iron architecture. It focuses on Georges Méliès's first studio (built in 1897) and describes its roots in structures including the Galeries des Machines at Paris's international expositions and the photography studio on the roof of Méliès's magic theatre in Paris. Filmmakers such as Méliès used the same materials and designs that changed turn-of-the-century Western cities to create the first buildings for film production. In doing so, they made the primary characteristics of nineteenth-century architecture – spatial plasticity and fluidity, artificiality, and the manipulation of light – defining elements of both the first film studios and the films created there. This essay argues that early cinema, especially in its relationship to architecture, played a significant role in the changes of industrial modernity that historians of technology describe as the greatest technological revolution in history: the construction of an increasingly artificial, human-built world. As urban populations adjusted to the artificiality of modern space, cinema arrived to both re-imagine the built environment and re-create artificial worlds on the screen. Filmmakers such as Méliès, who built and worked in the first studios, occupied a unique position: both the films they made and the spaces in which they worked were at the vanguard of fraught changes in the experience of Western urban reality. While early film historians have detailed the ways that urban modernity affected cinematic spectatorship, this essay shows that film production spaces were part and parcel of that process. (Author abstract)

  2. Productive intermediality and the expert audiences of magic theatre and early film

    Joe Kember.

    Early Popular Visual Culture, Vol. 8, No. 1, February 2010, pp. 31-46.

    The central contention of this article is that from an institutional perspective, the important point about intermediality, and especially about the appearance of new media, is that it is almost always productive, generating discontinuities, ellipses, and anxieties that can be worked upon within media texts and creatively worked through by those who produce, exhibit, and consume them. Working through two case studies focused upon the idea of the 'trick' within magic theatre and early film at the turn of the nineteenth century, the article therefore seeks to address questions of medium principally in terms of the material practices enacted at the shows themselves. (Author abstract)

  3. Review: ARTS: Feet off the ground: He transformed photography and laid the foundations for motion pictures, but Eadweard Muybridge has always been dogged by controversy. His biographer, Rebecca Solnit, defends the great innovator against a new campaign of innuendo

    Rebecca Solnit.

    The Guardian, Sep 4 2010, pp. 16.

    In his lifetime motion pictures proper were invented, with contributions from Thomas Edison, the Lumiere brothers, and others, and [Eadweard Muybridge] was given a little credit for his founding role. But when one of the first histories of motion pictures was written, Muybridge was denied credit all over again. Terry Ramsaye's book, A Million and One Nights, was influenced by one of those surviving engineers, an unscrupulous egomaniac named John D Isaacs. Isaacs had in fact worked on the camera shutters, but in the 1920s, when no one else was around to correct him, he began to exaggerate his role at Muybridge's expense, and Ramsaye took Isaacs at face value, filling his history with slights to Muybridge's contribution and detours into his domestic scandals. Muybridge's reputation remained eclipsed for decades. In the course of making the case for Carleton Watkins's genius, the J Paul Getty Museum's just-retired photography curator, Weston J Naef, has been nibbling away at Muybridge's standing. [Watkins] was a gorgeously gifted landscape photographer whose standing doesn't need enhancement, but Naef in 2008 mounted an exhibition at the Getty that attempted to attribute anonymous images to Watkins on sketchy evidence and suggested that Watkins influenced Muybridge's serial imagery for the motion studies. After the Muybridge show now opening at Tate Britain, opened at the Corcoran Gallery in Washington DC, Naef gave a long interview suggesting that Watkins, who was the same age but took up photography earlier, helped, taught, mentored and sometimes outright made Muybridge's photographs. Naef even questioned how Muybridge could have become, in 1868, such a "world-class" photographer with so little background in the medium. The three-part online interview casts doubt on much of Muybridge's achievement, with little evidence other than Naef's standing in the photographic world. The curator even questions whether Muybridge actually went to Alaska in 1868 and made the images published under his name, though they were commissioned by the government and circulated by the artist as his work at the time with no questions asked. The general who commissioned them wrote to Muybridge about them.

  4. Workers Leaving the Factory

    A. Lochhead.

    Our Times, Vol. 28, No. 6, Dec 2009/Jan 2010, pp. 37.

    ON A SUNNY DAY IN 1895, THE employees of the Lumière Electric Factory in Lyons, France, walked out at the end of their shift and into cinematic history. Their employer, Louis Lumière, was experimenting with a cinématographe, a new device capable of recording and projecting moving pictures. Lumière shot three different versions of the film that day, and these experiments would later be exhibited under the title La Sortie des Usines Lumière as the world's very first moving pictures. These points were equally present in [Sharon Lockhart]'s Exit. Monumental in its scale, the video installation was perhaps the most similar of the three to the original Lumière production. Shot on location at the Bath Iron Works, in Maine, Lockhart set up her camera just inside the works' gates, documenting the workers over the course of a week at this once-mighty institution as they left at the end of their workday. Shot from a rear-facing angle, so with the workers walking away from the camera as opposed to towards it, Lockhart avoided the problem of performance that haunts the Lumière film. In choosing this angle, it seems Lockhart opted for a more documentary approach to the work. But her choice of a single perspective, and such large scale, allowed the viewer to enter into the piece and imagine themselves as part of this daily milieu. However, it didn't allow the viewer to address the workers directly, on a human level, whereas parts of Davenport's work did. While Exit allowed the viewer entry to the picture plane, it also created a certain distance, which, again, along with the work's scale, allowed for the edification of the subject that is necessary to the work's success. This heroic nature also manifested itself in another previously mentioned formal aspect of the work: the choice of the rearfacing shot. By allowing the viewer generally to only see the backs of the workers, Lockhart created a contemporary ruckensjigur-. the heroic everyman of German romantic painting. Of course, to raise the spectre of the romantic in Lockhart's work, one must also address notions of nostalgia, and this was certainly present in the history of the iron works itself. One sensed a certain longing for the tradition and collective memory embedded in this space and the works' status within its community. But this romance was also keenly punctuated with the work's insistence on the use of title cards to differentiate between days. The titles served as a constant reminder of the regimentation, routine and mechanization that prevail in the life of the worker.

  5. Deserted histories: The Lumiere Brothers, the pyramids and early film form

    Michael Allan.

    Early Popular Visual Culture, Vol. 6, No. 2, July 2008, pp. 159-170.

    When Alexandre Promio reached the shores of Alexandria in 1897, he began a voyage to capture Egyptian sites cinematically for the Lumiere Brothers' film company. Among a number of these early films, his 50-second shot of the pyramids at Giza, Les Pyramides (vue generale), is now understood as a monument within early film history and a testament to the international spread of the new medium. What the film offers, however, is less the novelty of seeing the pyramids, which were often depicted in paintings, lithographs and photography, than the novelty of seeing them in time. The article argues that Les Pyramides (vue generale) transforms the pyramids from mythologized and abstracted objects into a temporal event seen over a 50-second duration. Juxtaposing the film alongside David Roberts' Approach of the Simoon, the article first explores how the film shifts the relation to the historical past located in the distinction between restoration and preservation. Then, turning to Andre Bazin's 'The Ontology of the Photographic Image' and Alfred North Whitehead's theory of the event, the article addresses how the film's realism derives less from what it depicts than with the duration of depiction itself. Les Pyramides (vue generale) ultimately challenges the thematic discussion of film in terms of objects and places and invites us to consider the implications of cinematic time in the history of film form. (Author abstract)

  6. An early piece of cinematic history?

    Rebecca P. Butler.

    TechTrends [H.W.Wilson - EDUC], Vol. 52, No. 6, Nov 2008, pp. 17.

    A report on the Praxinoscope Theatre, a 19th-century optical toy, is provided. Patented by Emile Reynaud of France in 1879, this toy consisted of a moving image framed with a painted stationary image. It used a multi-sided arrangement of mirrors to give the illusion of moving pictures.

  7. Movie pioneer caught in a disappearing act

    Troy Lennon.

    The Daily Telegraph, Oct 14 2008, pp. 38.

    Le Prince was born Louis Aime Augustin Le Prince in Metz, France, in 1842, the son of an artillery officer. The father's technical training rubbed off on the son, who earned degrees in chemistry and mathematics. But Louis became a painter and came under the influence of Louis-Jacques-Mande Daguerre, painter, physicist and pioneer of photography. Daguerre gave Le Prince lessons in photography. In 1866 Le Prince met Englishman John Robinson Whitley, who would later become an entertainment entrepreneur. Whitley invited Le Prince to his home in Leeds, where he worked in the family business Whitley Partners, a brass foundry. Le Prince had heard about the English-born, American-based Eadweard Muybridge trying to capture motion on film. Muybridge produced a series of photographs of a horse in motion in 1875 but had devised no method of playing them back. Le Prince began to work on constructing a camera that could film something in motion and then play it back.

  8. Americanizing the Movies and "Movie-Mad" Audiences, 1910-1914

    Lisa Gitelman.

    The Journal of American History, Vol. 93, No. 4, Mar 2007, pp. 1289.

    Americanizing the Movies and "Movie-Mad" Audiences, 1910-1914 advances from the nickelodeon era of the 190Os to the crucial 1910s when the Motion Picture Patents Company "trust" vied with "independents" to dominate the industry and when multi-reel narratives began to emerge as its cardinal commodities. [...] cowboy films, crime melodramas, detective films, jungle pictures, and nonfiction short subjects all differently enrolled diverse audiences within a shared knowledge of conventional themes.

  9. Illusory Bodies: Magical performance on stage and screen

    Dan North.

    Early Popular Visual Culture, Vol. 5, No. 2, July 2007, pp. 175-188.

    This article draws upon a range of nineteenth- and early twentieth-century accounts of magic performance to argue that the success of an illusion was dependent upon the spectator's engagement with the trick as a conscious application of mechanical effects. The stated aims of the magicians' art, as evidenced by their published statements, but also by the nature of their applied techniques, was that audience response was not to be a simple form of stupefaction, but a lively interaction with the performance as both a meticulously composed spectacular sight and as a contribution to a broader fascination with technology and illusionism. Spectators were encouraged, directly or indirectly, to make comparative assessments of the illusions with which they were presented, based on their knowledge of earlier instances of the same tricks or on their awareness of published exposés of popular effects. This kind of collusive illusionism is carried into the filmic realm, as demonstrated significantly by the work of the French film-maker Georges Méliès. In adapting his popular stage illusions for incorporation into the new film medium, Méliès prompted comparisons between the different versions of the same tricks, thus highlighting the distinct and defining characteristics of each medium. (Author abstract)

  10. Subversive Sounds: Ethnic Spectatorship and Boston's Nickelodeon Theatres, 1907-1914

    Desirée J. Garcia.

    Film History: An International Journal, Vol. 19, No. 3, 2007, pp. 213-227.

    This paper expands on previous accounts of nickelodeon history by focusing on one specific neighborhood, the South End of Boston, and how several local theaters catered to the area's ethnic and immigrant population. Special attention is given to the live portion of the bill at the Theatre Comique, Columbia, Castle Square and Back Bay theaters, particularly to their individualized presentation of musical performance.

  11. Louis Le Prince: the body of evidence

    Richard Howells.

    Screen, Vol. 47, No. 2, Summer 2006, pp. 179-200.

    If Louis Aimé Augustin Le Prince is known at all within screen studies today, it is usually for his mysterious disappearance - just as it seems he was ready to reveal his "invention" of moving pictures. This article provides the first scholarly examination of the evidence to show precisely what he had achieved at the time of his death. It concludes that Le Prince had indeed succeeded making pictures move at least seven years before the Lumière brothers and Thomas Edison, and so suggests a re-writing of the history of early cinema. The article begins with a synopsis of Le Prince's life and work, the culmination of which was his moving pictures of traffic on Leeds Bridge, England, in 1888. The bulk of the analysis, however, comprises a detailed study of the documentary evidence (including the Le Prince papers, which are still in private hands in the United States), together with the physical evidence (including his surviving cameras and images). Particular attention is given to the importance of celluloid and projection, together with what can be learned from modern re-animations of Le Prince's surviving work. Finally, the article uses the study of Le Prince to question the underlying assumptions behind the concept of invention and the primacy debate. In this way, it locates Le Prince not only within the history of the cinema, but also the history of cinema within the philosophy and public understanding of science. (Author abstract)

  12. Why Girls Leave Home: Victorian and Edwardian 'Bad-Girl' Melodrama Parodied in Early Film

    David Mayer.

    Theatre Journal, Vol. 58, No. 4, 2006, pp. 575-593.

    Purporting to depict an entire four-act stage play, Why Girls Leave Home, a six-minute Edison film made in America for the British market, dates either from 1909 or 1912. This film parodies the clichés of the Melville brothers' 'bad-girl' melodrama, thus inviting study of Melvillian melodrama as a pervasive, if lurid, English theatrical genre, and similarly inviting investigation of the tactics of theatrical parody. The action of Why Girls Leave Home is described. The terms 'girl' and 'home' are analyzed in the contexts of turn-of-the-century Britain, where these words attained significance in relating to recently emancipated women, to work, to marital choices, and, adversely, to the inevitable consternation and social backlash that female independence brought. Melvillian melodrama is seen as a significant part of this widespread backlash. 'Bad-girl melodrama' is also contrasted with 'girl' musical comedy, especially girl-musicals presented at London's Gaiety Theatre that toured widely throughout Britain, the Empire, and North America. The Melvilles, theatrically successful, placed some of their stage dramas on early film. Parody, explicit in Why Girls Leave Home, creates a simulacrum of Melvillian drama in order to ridicule melodramatic plotting, inept and heartless gesticulatory stage acting, excessive reliance on stage machinery for sensational effects, and the propensity of such machinery to malfunction at critical moments of performance.

  13. "Wonderful Apparatus," or Life of an American Fireman

    Jonathan Auerbach.

    American Literature, Vol. 77, No. 4, Dec 2005, pp. 669.

    Edwin S. Porter's film Life of an American Fireman has a formal continuity that seems to be compromised by flagrant disconnections and obscurely motivated action. The film, with its various experiments with transmitting bodies through space, can be said to encapsulate or stand for the oscillations of Porter's career as a whole.

  14. Penny Pleasures: Film Exhibition in London during the Nickelodeon Era, 1906-1914

    Jon Burrows.

    Film History: An International Journal, Vol. 16, No. 1, 2004, pp. 60-91.

    Towards the end of July 1907 the trade paper Kinematograph and Lantern Weekly heralded what would appear to be a landmark moement in the history of film exhibition in Britain: 'the first Kinematograph Theatre in London.' The venue thus described was the Balham Empire at 75 Balham High Road, in the South London suburb of the same name. A few significant details about this show were provided. Its film programmes were initially supplied exclusively by Pathé Frères and were presented, in the fashion of a variety theatre, in twice nightly shows (plus two matinees a week) which each lasted two hours. Apparently a full orchestra played 'suitable music' to accompany the fourteen different films which featured. A reporter visited the Balham Empire again a month later and confirmed the same salient facts, going so far as to claim this time that it was the very first venue 'devoted entirely to the diplay of living pictures ... in this country.'

  15. RAIDERS OF THE LOST ART; Dayton's Library of Congress restores lost movies

    Andy Copp.

    Dayton City Paper, Vol. 2, No. 35, Dec 1-Dec 7 2004, pp. 10.

    "Nitrate film can be dangerous because it is flammable," [Ken Weissman] said. "Chemically, it's a close cousin to "gun cotton," which is used in munitions manufacturing. On top of that, if a fire were to start, it cannot be put out with conventional means because it manufactures its own oxygen as it burns. Having said that, it isn't really any more likely to catch fire on it's own than a piece of paper (would while) sitting on your desk. As long as you respect it, and take normal precautions (no smoking), handling it is pretty routine. I'm extremely proud of the fact that we have not had any incidents – we have an excellent safety record." Some of the other films in the set were restored from what is known as "paper prints," such as New York Ghetto Fish Market, Greeting by George Bernhard Shaw and The Pasaic Textile Strike. These films are all part of the Library's Paper Print Collection, a veritable treasure trove of early films. Prior to 1912, U.S. copyright law required film companies that wanted to copyright their motion pictures to submit two copies of each film to the Library on paper. This was because the Copyright Office ruled that a motion picture was nothing more than a series of consecutive still images, so the still photo copyright law was applied. Film companies created these "paper prints" (photographic paper strips exposed using the original camera negatives) strictly for the purpose of registering the copyright. "For years, the Library has held the collection of films from the [Thomas Edison] laboratories in New Jersey," Weissman said. "Edison was a key player in the invention of the film projector and camera, and is credited by many as the 'inventor' of the motion picture. For a while, he operated his own film studio in Orange, New Jersey. One of his employees was a man by the name of Edwin S. Porter who, as part of the Edison team, directed a film in 1903 called The Great Train Robbery. The film is generally revered in film circles as the first true "movie." It was an edited fiction film, shot in various locations, and had a script (and it contains rear projection special effects, too).

  16. Film Exhibition in Seattle, 1897-1912: leisure activity in a scraggly, smelly frontier town

    Taso G. Lagos.

    Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television; 23 (2) Jun 2003, Vol. 23, No. 2, pp.101-115 2003, pp. 101-115.

    In 1900, America's population totaled 75,994,575, of which 80,671 lived in the scraggly, smelly frontier town of Seattle. Seattle wanted to be important, and cultural influence fit into that desire. The city therefore provides a useful case study of the growth of nickelodeons,and the diverse group of individuals who took advantage of the cheap technology to create an important new industry. The city's embrace of progress along with its ability to attract colourful characters made it quick to embrace an art form that emerged from Edison's Kinetoscope, later called the Vitascope. The cold, damp environment helped; indoor entertainment is natural. Rain offers few choices for recreation and movies took advantage of the inclement weather, which may explain why in time Seattle went on to be christened "Movie Town, U.S.A." The Gold Rush in the 1890s also helped stimulate entertainment venues. (Quotes from original text)

  17. Film rolled out a century ago with 'Great Train Robbery'

    Bob Thomas.

    Chicago Sun – Times, Dec 21 2003, pp. 13.

    There was no red carpet; no flash bulbs or blazing marquee. "The Great Train Robbery" premiered without fanfare between stage acts in a rundown Manhattan vaudeville house, the Luban's Museum on 14th Street. "The Great Train Robbery" was an immediate sensation. Audiences were gripped by the fast action, realistic depiction of the Old West and [George Barnes]' gunshot. Viewers even flinched when a raging train seemed to be aimed right at them. "The Great Train Robbery" was a product of Thomas A. Edison's film studio, considered to be the world's first. Edison invented motion pictures and was quick to capitalize on the marvel.

  18. One Film Saved the Industry ; 'Great Train Robbery' Received its Copyright nearly 100 Years Ago

    Daniel Neman and,Contact Daniel Neman at (804) 649-6408 or.

    Richmond Times - Dispatch, Nov 28 2003, pp. C.4.

    Then came 12 minutes of magic. Made by the Edison Manufacturing Co. and directed by Edwin S. Porter, "The Great Train Robbery" was the most exciting thing anyone had ever seen on a screen. The crowning moment came when [Justus D. Barnes] calmly shot his gun at the camera. Shocked audiences thought he was actually shooting at them. Filmed in New Jersey, where Thomas Edison's company was located, "The Great Train Robbery" is often credited with being the first Western. A couple of other obscure early Edison films, however, may also have been set in the West. Still, this movie is notable for other advancements in an era when the heavy camera was stuck on a tripod and stayed there. "It's got a few little touches in it. As far as I know, there is one of the first times the camera pans and tilts. The robbers have gotten off the train and go down a hill, and the camera follows them a little. Actually, the camera loses them, because they walk too fast," [Irby Brown] said.

  19. Cinematic art L'art cinématographique

    Berys (1) Gaut.

    The Journal of aesthetics and art criticism, Vol. 60, No. 4, 2002, pp. 299-312.

    Filmmakers during the first two decades of the new medium's existence thought of themselves sometimes as scientists, sometimes as explorers, sometimes as entertainers, but hardly ever as artists, as pioneers of a new artistic medium. D. W. Griffith in his earliest Biograph films from 1908 did not dare put his name on the credits, lest his ambitions in the legitimate theater be undermined by his low-life escapades with celluloid. Only gradually did he come to think of his films as works of art; and if Birth of a Nation (1915) and Intolerance (1916) look now like deeply problematic achievements, they did at least represent a self-conscious striving to make films that are art. Though filmmakers took some time to think of their activity as a kind of art, theorists took longer. Hugo Munsterberg's pioneering The Photoplay: A Psychological Study (1916) represents the first sustained attempt to defend film as an art. But even in 1933 Rudolf Arnheim in his Film (1933, revised as Film as Art in 1957) could think of the leading issue in film theory as the attempt to show that film is an art. Indeed, Arnheim famously defended silent film as an art, but looked with some apprehension at the newly invented sound film, which he thought of as a threat to the artistic status of cinema. In fact, a great deal of early (or classical) film theory, as Noël Carroll has shown, was concerned with arguing that cinema, despite its mechanical, photographic basis, is an art form.1 So much for history: what has this to do with us today? I argue here that the historical challenge to cinema as an art form still has a surprising degree of force; I investigate the nature of that challenge, show that it has two distinct though related forms, and reply to them both. Investigation of the twin challenges will establish that cinema can satisfy an important criterion for being an art: that it be able to communicate thoughts about its subject matter.

  20. From Méphistophélès to Méliès: Spectacle and narrative in opera and early film

    Rose M. Theresa.

    London: Routledge, 2002, pp. 1-18.

    Examines spectacle and narrative as differing forms of visual pleasure, considering spectacle as static and disruptive, and narrative as spatial and involving temporal movement. The two are also seen as structured through sexual difference. Spectacle is associated with the feminine—"look at me"—while narrative is aligned with the masculine–"look with me". It is contended that Georges Méliès's film Faust et Marguerite (1904), based on Charles Gounod's Faust, exemplifies these definitions of spectacle and narrative, and also foreshadows their evolution in cinematic language and spectatorship, from an overwhelming emphasis on spectacle to the extensive development of narrative.

  21. "The living nickelodeon"

    The sounds of early cinema

    Rick Altman.

    Bloomington, Indiana: Indiana University Press, 2001, 232-240

    The previously neglected study of early film sound requires a new set of assumptions and practices that have yet to receive universeal acceptance. The strongest impediment to new understanding of early film sound lies in the tendency to ascribe post-1915 meanings to terms that meant something quite different before 1915. Several misunderstood terms are discussed and four early accompaniment modes are identified. These four practices were exemplified by four separate programs of The Living Nickelodeon, a research-driven entertainment first performed during the 1998 Library of Congress Domitor conference.

  22. A movie murder mystery

    Richard Howells.

    The Times Higher Education Supplement [H.W.Wilson - EDUC], No. 1394, Jul 23 1999, pp. 18.

    Some believe that cinema was invented in Leeds, Great Britain, by the Frenchman Louis Aime Augustin Le Prince. His breakthrough predated the work of both Thomas Edison and the Lumiere brothers but was never made public because of his permanent disappearance during a journey to France.

  23. Nationalism and the beginnings of cinema: The Lumiere cinematographe in the US, 1896-1897

    Charles Musser.

    Historical Journal of Film, Radio, and Television, Vol. 19, No. 2, Jun 1999, pp. 149.

    Musser chronicles the debut of the Lumiere cinematographie in the US, focusing on how and why the nascent film industry, amusement entrepreneurs and audiences nogotiated different aspects of nationalism and cosmopolitanism.

  24. Directors celebrate Lumieres' fabulous relic

    Jay Carr.

    Boston Globe, Vol. , No. , May 23 1997, pp. D.7.

    LUMIERE AND COMPANY Documentary by: Sarah Moon At: Harvard Film Archive Running time: 88 minutes Rating: Unrated The idea was a natural — to celebrate film's 100th birthday in 1995 by having today's directors use the first movie camera, the hand-cranked cinematographe, invented by France's pioneering Lumiere brothers, Louis and Auguste. And so Philippe Poulet, of the Lyon Cinema Museum, put the camera in the hands of 40 directors around the world, requiring them to play by the same rules as the Lumieres — daylight only, no synchronized sound, no more than three takes, each work no more than 52 seconds (the maximum amount of film the cinematographe can hold). The result is "Lumiere and Company," an affectionate and, at times, ingenious compendium starring a venerable but still vital camera, punctuated by brief interviews with the directors behind it. Actually, the cinematographe, about a foot square in its walnut box atop a tripod, is more than a camera. It also develops, prints, and projects the finished product — an efficient one-stop film delivery service. More than one filmmaker marvels at the functional elegance of this fabulous relic. Between the hand-cranking and the reproduction of the original Lumiere emulsion, the neo-Lumiere films have the same shimmer and flicker of the originals, adding to their effect, achieving a turn-of-the-century look naturally. Sometimes it's both starkly and lyrically poetic, as in Andre Konchalovsky's film of a dead dog against a misty canyon in the background.

  25. The Lumiere Cinematographe and the Grand Cafe projection of 1895: a reexamination

    H. Mark Gosser.

    SMPTE Journal [H.W.Wilson - AST], Vol. 105, Oct 1996, pp. 653.

    A reexamination of the Lumiere Cinematographe and the Grand Cafe Projection of December 28, 1895. Developed by the Lumi'ere brothers, the Lumiere Cinematographe could be used as a camera and a printer as well as a projector. The construction, final physical structure, and operation of the device are described. The details and qualities that helped the 2 brothers succeed are also examined in detail.

  26. The Lumière Cinématographe and the production of the cinema in Japan in the earliest period

    Hiroshi Komatsu.

    Film History (ARCHIVE), Vol. 8, No. 4, 1996, pp. 431.

    At the beginning of the nineteenth century, there existed in Japan what were called utsushi-e, moving pictures projected onto a screen, a popular entertainment of the period. Utsushi-e disappeared towards the end of the century when the Kinetoscope, the Vitascope and the Cinématographe appeared in Japan. It might thus be thought that these Western scientific machines had conquered popular Japanese culture. However, the narrative tradition based on the utsushi-e soon came to define the machinery of the real Japanese cinema. Although Japan learned a great deal from the West a bout the cinema as a scientific mechanism, Japanese cinema, speaking, strictly as a representational cinema, only made use of this knowledge in the earliest period. It can be said that until the beginning of the 1920s, Japanese cinema was an antiWestern cinema. In this way, that scientific mechanism of the cinema, as an intellectual object comprising perception and knowledge, certainly helped in the earliest period to bring about the rediscovery within popular culture of the notion of Japanese representation.

    The Kinetoscope, the Vitascope and the Cinématographe came to Japan one after the other in 1896 and 1897. As the Kinetoscope was simply a box in which ran a number of small pictures that appeared to move, it only took six months for it to be displaced by the two other machines, which allowed projection onto a screen. It was more or less at the same time in February 1 897 that Cinématographe and Vitascope projections took place in Japan, in the city of Osaka. The audiences were impressed to observe with their own eyes the latest American or French inventions exhibited to them.

  27. Auguste and Louis Lumiere created first movie in 1895


    Stamps, Vol. 251, No. 3, Apr 15 1995, pp. 5.

    Brothers Auguste Lumiere and Louis Lumiere were French inventors and pioneer manufacturers of photographic equipment who devised an early motion picture camera and projector called the Cinematographe. France honored the Lumiere brothers in 1955 with a stamp upon the 60th anniversary of their invention.

  28. Buster Keaton could picture it Comic's great eye for film angles was unmatched

    Critic,Howie Movshovitz Denver Post Movie.

    Denver Post (pre-1997 Fulltext), Jan 15 1995, pp. E.01.

    For sheer frenzied laughter, Harold Lloyd was probably the best of the great movie clowns of the silent period. Harry Langdon came close, but his career was terribly short. Chaplin was easily the finest actor, the most tender and socially engaged of the silent clowns. But Buster Keaton was the best filmmaker. Keaton, though, understood the unique capability of film. A man of virtually no education who was raised on the vaudeville stage and knew almost no other world, Keaton saw better than just about any filmmaker since the 1890s that there could be many a slip 'twixt the camera's cup and the viewer's lip. That's essential Keaton comedy, based on vectors and arcs. It's the comedy and the cinema of physics, one of the deep-seated concerns of the greatest art of the 20th century. Keaton's profound, intuitive understanding of the relationship between the physical world and character marks him as one of the century's great artists.

  29. Lumiere and his view: The cameraman's eye in early cinema

    Livio Belloi.

    Historical Journal of Film, Radio, and Television, Vol. 15, No. 4, Oct 1995, pp. 461.

    Auguste-Marie-Louis-Nicolas Lumiere is one of the great pioneers of cinematography. Belloi examines Lumiere's view in his early footage.

  30. What First Movie Audiences Saw


    Daily News, Dec 28 1995, pp. L.5.

    One hundred years ago today, the first public showing of a motion picture to a paying audience took place in the basement of a Paris cafe. "The first time, people were just so awed by seeing moving images," said Ellen Harrington, special events and exhibitions coordinator for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in Beverly Hills. The organization recently re-created the atmosphere of that first screening during a presentation on the brothers' works. In 1895, the Lumieres invented the cinematographe, a motion-picture camera, printer and projector that was used to produce some of the first motion pictures.

  31. The Black Maria (Thomas Edison and WKL Dickson's invention of motion pictures)

    Seth Feldman.

    Queen's Quarterly, Vol. 100, No. 1, Spring 1993, pp. 239.

    Thomas Edison's film production studio, the Black Maria, is discussed.