Monday, January 01, 2018

"Fire!" (1901)

Frame from James Williamson's FIRE! (1901).
Williamson (part of the group of early British filmmakers that French film historian Georges Sadoul called the "Brighton School") was a pioneer of both trick films and narrative films. FIRE! was a direct influence on Porter's THE LIFE OF AN AMERICAN FIREMAN, made at the end of 1902. Although Williamson's staging of the interior scenes is handled nearly identically by Porter, Williamson's shooting of the exteriors of the burning house are made more dramatic by closer placement of the camera and the diagonal framing, which makes the action clearer to the audience.

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