This one is actually a late change. Because for some strange reason along the way, I had Life of an American Fireman in this spot. Which would have been the perfect film. Only, it was shot in 1902 and released in 1903. And I have choices for those two years already. There’s no way I could have explained that choice for 1901. I must have made the error and not noticed it. So we instead change to The Big Swallow.
This fits in line with my talk of experimentation. We’re not really getting much in the way of narrative storytelling here (not like we would have if we talked about Life of an American Fireman), but we’ll have our fill of that soon enough. This is more in line with yesterday’s film. Creating visual techniques to do something interesting. (Technically I could have went with the British film Fire!, which was an influence on Life of an American Fireman, and possibly where the confusion came in, but I decided to just skip that altogether and just go with this one, because it’s so interesting of a film to talk about.
Essentially the film is this: A dude is talking, the camera gets closer and closer to his face, he opens his mouth wide, and he swallows the camera. And the camera man. That’s it. It’s a bit of a joke film, but it actually contains some great camera tricks in it. (more…)