Though not slapstick, strictly-speaking, Lumière’s The Sprinkler Sprinkled (aka L’Arroseur Arrosé and The Waterer Watered) earns the starting spot in this summer series for three main reasons:
- It’s the 1st comedy film.
- What’s more Summer-y than sprinkling sprinklers?
- The film’s alliterative English name compliments the blog title.
Thus begins the Summer of Slapstick, which will contain the early shorts of Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, Harold Lloyd, Mabel Normand, Fatty Arbuckle, Max Linder, Ford Sterling and the Keystone Cops, and other surprises.
May 20, 2012 — chrisgiddens
A King is blessed to have fulfilled the fantasy of many men and women: a sorcerer to summon a beautiful mate (with accompanying handmaidens), just for him. But he blows it, of course, after being offended by one of the magician’s follow-up tricks in which the throne is temporarily occupied by someone other than himself. Psssh, men. Typical.
May 17, 2012 — chrisgiddens
The Enchanted Well (Le puits fantastique) contains one of the greatest inanimate movie villains this side of Requiem for a Dream. Per usual, Méliès is a devilish delight.
April 9, 2012 — chrisgiddens
The appropriately titled Surprise Attack on a House at Daybreak (aka House Ambushed at Dawn) by Alice Guy-Blaché begins rather shockingly, and then the action continues all the way through the final frames.
March 30, 2012 — chrisgiddens
In Eight Girls in a Barrel (aka Le tonneau des danaïdes, aka The Dainaid’s Barrel) Georges Méliès has fun with 8 women. And a barrel. The original French title references a Greek myth where forty-nine of the fifty daughters of King Danaus (i.e. the Danaids) were sentenced to fill bottomless barrels with water for all eternity as a punishment.
March 26, 2012 — chrisgiddens
The Wizard, the Prince and the Good Fairy (aka Le sorcier, le prince et le bon génie) contains the standard bag of tricks, such as stop-cut replacement editing, utilized during the time period by Méliès. Unique in this film is the framing of the slightly angled shot for the set, which allows for a larger-than-normal area of action.