A man falls asleep next to his smoking table and is soon tormented by a pair of cigarette-loving fairies. This zany trick film from the American Vitagraph company plays around with the notion of fay malice.
A wastrel son uses up his own money and so he forges his mother’s signature to get more. However, the family portrait gallery comes to life and the figures take turns berating their descendant for sullying the clan crest.
Psychedelic half a century before the word was coined, this film is a cautionary tale that warns against overindulgence in cheese toast. The film’s nightmarish and zany special effects hold up rather well and this proved to be another smash hit for the dominant Edison film company.
The Edison film company took a stab at talking pictures pre-WWI and we are going to be looking at one of the most famous Kinetophone production. One of over 200 sound films released in 1913 and 1914, Nursery Favorites brings everyone’s favorite Mother Goose characters to life.
Georges Méliès turns his magical creative vision to the famous Tales of the Thousand and One Nights in this ambitious picture. Beautiful sets, elaborate costumes and a relatively large cast blend together to create a rich cinematic environment.
Continue reading “The Palace of the Arabian Nights (1905) A Silent Film Review”
A pair of siblings go on a magical journey accompanied by sentient kitchen objects (bread, sugar, milk, etc.) in search of the blue bird of happiness. Director Maurice Tourneur brings his usual visual flair to the proceedings.
L Frank Baum’s American fairy tale hit the silver screens for the first time with this one-reel motion picture. Dorothy is whisked off to the land of Oz accompanied by a mule and a cow and Toto, who is transformed into a hellbeast… Yeah, it’s a pretty loose adaptation.
Lewis Carroll’s iconic book is brought to the screen in this relatively faithful adaptation. Alice spends the film chasing after that evasive white rabbit but ends up meeting a dodo, a psychotic queen and a talking caterpillar. Absinthe is a helluva drug.
Oz was much more than just Dorothy and Toto. In this case, we have fairies, an enchanted cloak, soup-obsessed villains, men in donkey suits, bandits, evil leaping monkey things, strange coronation rituals and a heroine who goes by the name of Fluff. Say what you will about the land of Oz but it was never boring.
Continue reading “The Magic Cloak of Oz (1914) A Silent Film Review”
Snow-skinned princesses and dwarfs combine forces once more in the straightforward version of the classic fairy tale. 1910’s favorite Marguerite Clark is the title character, Creighton Hale is the prince and a very young Richard Barthelmess makes an appearance as one of the evil queen’s disguises. Yes, really.
Continue reading “Snow White (1916) A Silent Film Review”