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Early Cinema: Primitives And Pioneers (2 Discs) (BFI)

Released on 05 September 2005

Format: DVD | Rating: Exempt from Classification

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A fascinating collection of fifty-nine films from the pre-1910 period of cinema is presented here with optional insightful commentary written by revered film historian, Barry Salt. It includes a selection of 35mm films such as Pathe's Ali Baba Et Les Quarante Voleurs and Magic Bricks, plus a newly restored and tinted version of Edwin S. Porter's The Great Train Robbery.

This double-disc set provides an entertaining look at how many of today's film devices such as the close-up, the cut-away and editing, were first invented before the turn of the century by filmmakers such as George Melies (with Voyage A Travers L'Impossible), G. A. Smith (with Mary Jane's Mishap), and the Hepworth Manufacturing Company (with Rescued By Rover).

The films, all preserved at the BFI National Film and Television Archive, have been remastered for this collection which is a must for the film enthusiast. This delightful anthology comes with a new isolated, improvised, score in Dolby Digital provided by Neil Brand, John Sweeney and Stephen Horne - pianists at the National Film Theatre in London.

Disc 1:

1. Sortie d'usine (1895)
2. Repas de bébé (1895)
3. Démolition d'un mur (1895)
4. Le Jardinier et le petit espiègle (1895)
5. Arrivée des Congressistes à Neuville-sue-Sâlone (1895)
6. Arrivée d'un train en gare à La Ciotat (1895)
7. Partie d'écarté (1895)
8. Barque sortant du port (1895)
9. Leaving Jerusalem by Railway (1896)
10. Bataille de boules de neige (1896)
11. Pompiers à Lyon (c.1896)
12. Niagara (1897)
13. Spanish Bullfight (1900)
14. Voyage à travers l'impossible (extract) (1904)
15. Rough Sea at Dover (1895)
16. Come Along, Do! (1898)
17. The Derby (1896)
18. The Countryman and the Cinematograph (1901)
19. A Chess Dispute (1903)
20. Extraordinary Cab Accident (1903)
21. Buy Your Own Cherries (1904)
22. The (?) Motorist (1906)
23. The Miller and the Sweep (1898)
24. The Kiss in the Tunnel (1899)
25. Let Me Dream Again (1900)
26. Grandma's Reading Glass (1900)
27. As Seen Through a Telescope (1900)
28. Sick Kitten (1903)
29. Mary Jane's Mishap (1903)
30. Daring Daylight Burglary (1903)
31. Desperate Poaching Affray (1903)
32. Ladies' Skirts Nailed to a Fence (c.1900)
33. The Biter Bit (1900)
34. Rough Sea (c.1900)
35. Attack on a China Mission (1900)
36. The Big Swallow (c.1901)
37. Stop Thief! (1901)
38. Fire! (1901)
39. An Interesting Story (1905)

Disc 2:

1. How It Feels to Be Run Over (1900)
2. Explosions of a Motor Car (1900)
3. Rescued by Rover (1905)
4. The Other Side of the Hedge (1905)
5. That Fatal Sneeze (1907)
6. A Visit to Peek Frean and Co.'s Biscuit Works (1906)
7. A Day in the Life of a Coalminer (1910)
8. Par le trou de la serrure (1901)
9. Histoire d'un crime (1901)
10. Ali Baba et les quarante voleurs (1905)
11. Rêve et réalité (1901)
12. La Révolution en Russie (1905)
13. Aladin ou la lampe merveilleuse (1906)
14. Le Cheval emballé (1907)
15. The Physician of the Castle (1908)
16. Magic Bricks (1908)
17. Dewar's - It's Scotch (1898)
18. The Gay Shoe Clerk (1903)
19. The Great Train Robbery (1903)
20. The Dream of a Rarebit Fiend (1906)

  • Commentary on all films by film historian, Barry Salt
  • 20-page booklet

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DirectorEdwin S. Porter, G. A. Smith, George Melies, Auguste Lumiere & Louis Lumiere
CertificateExempt from Classification
ScreenFullscreen 4:3
LanguagesSilent with music - Dolby Digital (2.0) Stereo
SubtitlesEnglish for the hearing impaired
Duration3 hours and 7 minutes (approx)
RegionRegion 2 - Will only play on European Region 2 or multi-region DVD players.