Friday, December 01, 2017

"Le Squelette Joyeux" (1897) -- A Lumiere Trick Film

This is an interesting subject from Louis and Auguste Lumiere, of the kind of subject matter one does not typically associate with them.

It would appear to have been inspired by the early trick films of Melies, whose HAUNTED CASTLE of the previous year features a skeleton (although it doesn't dance). Or it could be a case of the Lumieres borrowing from similar theatrical traditions to branch out into new avenues of filmmaking.

Either way, it's an intriguing little subject. What I find most interesting about it is how, despite its fantastic nature, it actually appears quite drab and plain compared to the strikingly rich photographic compositions of the Lumiere actualities, which breathe with life and vitality.

I wonder which of their cameramen shot this subject, and if he ever did anything else similar to it?

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