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Treasures from American Film Archives (1893-1968)

Cast: Anna May Wong, William S. Hart, Marguerite Clark, more...
Director: Orson Welles, Joseph Cornell, D.W. Griffith, more...
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Rating: Not Rated
Studio: NFPF
Genre: Short Films
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This title is currently out of print.

Treasures from American Film Archives (Disc 1 of 4) (1893-1968)
This unusual collection brings together a number of rare, historically priceless silent films that were rescued from oblivion through the efforts of the National Film Preservation Foundation, a non-profit organization working in cooperation with the nation's leading motion picture archives. Highlights of this set include an early William S. Hart feature, Hell's Hinges; a 1916 screen adaptation of Snow White; The Toll of the Sea, an Anna May Wong vehicle shot in an early color process; D.W. Griffith's he Lonedale Operator; assorted short films featuring John Huston and Groucho Marx; and a light comedy that probably wouldn't get made these days, Princess Nicotine, or the Smoke Fairy. Newly recorded musical scores have been prepared for all the films in this set. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

  • OffOn (1968, 9 minutes), Scott Bartlett's avant-garde film, the first to fully merge film and video.
  • The Fall of the House of Usher (1928, 13 minutes), avant-garde landmark created by James Sibley Watson, Jr., and Melville Webber from Poe's short story.
  • Princess Nicotine; or, The Smoke Fairy (1909, 5 minutes), special-effects fantasy of a tormented smoker, by the Vitagraph Company.
    The Original Movie (1922, 8 minutes), silhouette animation satire on commercial filmmaking, by puppeteer Tony Sarg.
  • Hell's Hinges (1916, 64 minutes), William S. Hart Western about a town so depraved that earns its own destruction.
  • Private Snafu: Spies (1943, 4 minutes), wartime cartoon for U.S. servicemen, directed by Chuck Jones and written by Dr. Seuss.
  • Blacksmithing Scene (1893, 1 minute), first U.S. film shown publicly.
  • The Gay Shoe Clerk (1903, 1 minute), comic sketch with celebrated early editing.
  • Three American Beauties (1906, 1 minute), with rare stencil color.
  • The Confederate Ironclad (1912, 16 minutes), Civil War adventure, here accompanied by the original music score, in which the tough heroine saves the day.
  • Tevye (excerpt) (1939, 17 minutes), American Yiddish-language film, directed by Maurice Schwartz, adapted from Sholem Aleichem's stories.
  • Running Around San Francisco for an Education (ca. 1938, 2 minutes), early political ad, shown in San Francisco theaters, that helped win approval of local school bonds.
  • Cologne: From the Diary of Ray and Esther (1939, 14 minutes), small town portrait by amateur filmmakers, Dr. and Mrs. Dowidat.
  • Groucho Marx's Home Movies (excerpt) (ca. 1933, 2 minutes).

    Treasures from American Film Archives (Disc 2 of 4) (1903-1985)
  • Move On (1903, 1 minute), Lower East Side street scene, preserved from a paper print.
  • Dog Factory (1904, 4 minutes), trick film about fickle pet owners, preserved from a paper print.
  • Accuracy First (excerpt) (ca. 1928, 5 minutes), Western Union training film for women telegraph operators.
  • Early Amateur Sound Film (excerpt) (1936-37, 4 minutes), scenes of family life captured by sound-film hobbyist Archie Stewart.
  • West Virginia, the State Beautiful (excerpt) (1929, 8 minutes), amateur travelogue along Route 60.
  • One-Room Schoolhouses (excerpt) (ca. 1935, 1 min), amateur footage from rural Barbour County.
  • The Toll of the Sea (1922, 54 minutes), Anna May Wong in an early two-strip Technicolor melodrama, written by Frances Marion, and here accompanied a performance of the original music score.
  • The Lonedale Operator (1911, 17 minutes), D.W. Griffith's race-to-the-rescue drama, starring Blanche Sweet.
  • Her Crowning Glory (1911, 14 minutes), household comedy, with comic team John Bunny and Flora Finch, about an eight-year old who gets her way.
  • The Battle of San Pietro (1945, 33 minutes), celebrated combat documentary directed by John Huston.
  • Negro Leagues Baseball (1946, 8 minutes), footage featuring Reece "Goose" Tatum, the Indianapolis Clowns, and the Kansas City Monarchs.
  • Composition 1 (Themis) (1940, 4 minutes), Dwinell Grant's stop-motion abstraction.
  • Battery Film (1985, 9 minutes), experimental documentary of Manhattan, by animator Richard Protovin and photographer Franklin Backus.
  • Demolishing and Building Up Star Theatre (1901, 1 minute), the time-lapse demolition of a New York building, preserved from a paper print.

    Treasures from American Film Archives (Disc 3 of 4) (1908-1965)
  • White Fawn's Devotion (1910, 11 minutes), probably directed by James Young Deer and the earliest surviving film by a Native American.
  • La Valse (excerpt) (1951, 6 minutes), pas de deax from George Balanchine's 1951 ballet, featuring Tanaquil Le Clercq and Nicholas Magallanes and filmed at the Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival.
  • The Zeppelin Hindenburg (excerpt) (1936, 7 minutes), movies by a vacationing American family made on board this famous lighter-than-air-craft, one year before its destruction.
  • The Keystone "Patrician" (excerpt) (1928, 6 minutes), promotional film for new passenger plane.
  • The Wall (1962, 10 minutes), USIA film on the Berlin Wall made for international audiences.
  • We Work Again (1937, 15 minutes), WPA documentary on African American re-employment, including excerpt from Orson Welles' stage play of "Voodoo Macbeth".
  • Japanese American Communities (excerpt) (1927-32, 7 minutes), home movies shot by Rev. Sensho Sasaki in Stockton, California, and Tacoma, Washington.
  • The Thieving Hand (1908, 5 minutes), special-effects comedy.
  • The Chechahcos (1924, 86 minutes), first feature shot entirely on location in Alaska.
  • George Dumpson's Place (1965, 8 minutes), Ed Emshwiller's portrait of the scavenger artist.

    Treasures from American Film Archives (Disc 4 of 4) (1894-1943)
  • Rose Hobart (1936, 19 minutes), artist Joseph Cornell's celebrated found-footage film.
  • The Autobiography of a Jeep (1943, 10 minutes), the story of the soldier's all-purpose vehicle, as told by the jeep itself.
  • Interior New York Subway, 14th St. to 42nd St. (1905, 5 minutes), filmed by Biograph's Billy Bitzer shortly after the subway's opening.
  • Snow White (1916, 63 minutes), live-action feature of the Brothers Grimm tale starring Marguerite Clark.
  • The Land Beyond the Sunset (1912, 14 minutes), social problem drama about a tattered newspaper boy who yearns for a better life.
  • Marian Anderson: The Lincoln Memorial Concert (excerpt) (1939, 8 minutes), excerpt from a concert film, reconstructed from newsreels, outtakes, and radio broadcast materials.
  • The News Parade of 1934 (10 minutes), Hearst Metrotone newsreel summary of the year.
  • I'm Insured (1916, 3 minutes), cartoon by Harry Palmer.
  • Rural Life in Maine (excerpt) (ca. 1930, 12 minutes), footage filmed by Elizabeth Wright near her farm of Windy Ledge, in southwestern Maine.
  • Beautiful Japan (excerpt) (1918, 15 minutes), early travel-lecture feature by Benjamin Brodky.
  • Caicedo, King of the Slack Wire (1894, 1 minute), the first film shot outdoors at the Edison Studios.

  • GreenCine Member Ratings

    Treasures from American Film Archives (Disc 1 of 4) (1893-1968)
    read reviews    New Listadd to list
    7.50 (22 votes)
    Treasures from American Film Archives (Disc 2 of 4) (1903-1985)
    New Listadd to list
    6.60 (10 votes)
    Treasures from American Film Archives (Disc 3 of 4) (1908-1965)
    New Listadd to list
    6.82 (11 votes)
    Treasures from American Film Archives (Disc 4 of 4) (1894-1943)
    New Listadd to list
    7.36 (14 votes)

    GreenCine Member Reviews

    Interesting History Lesson by BrodiesGirl June 8, 2005 - 11:01 AM PDT
    1 out of 2 members found this review helpful
    I am always fascinated by early film history, especially shorts or experimental films.
    I loved Princess Nicotine, a hilariously strange little short involving a man dreaming about cigar-smoking fairies. Or the animated Army short by Chuck Jones! That was a great cartoon. I love early propaganda animation.

    I enjoyed this first disc quite a bit and look forward to the others in the series.

    More reviews for titles in this product:

    not on netf**x
    unique to GC and mainstream enough that NF should have it.
    National Film Registry (2003)
    "In 1988, the Library of Congress established the National Film Preservation Board, to preserve film deemed 'culturally, historically, or esthetically important.'" List #15

    see all lists

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