Georges Melies: First Wizard of Cinema 1896-1913
DVD | Box Set
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
This early wizard of modern filmmaking set a tempo for things to come. This collection celebrates 173 rare, original silent films by Georges Meliess, painstakingly gathered by Eric Lange and David Shepard, including his first film Partie de Cartes (1896) right on through to his last Voyage de la Famille Bourrichon (1913) on 5 DVDs. 1896-1913. (B&W/13 hrs/NR/fullscreen)
Would you like to tell us about a lower price?
If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support?
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
Sounds good, but what is revelatory is the visual quality of the films here. While a few exist only in fragments, and some films have, of course, rough quality, the vast bulk of this set is extraordinary. I wouldn't hesitate to say that noone alive right now has ever seen any of these films in better condition. Absolutely beautiful; it's obvious that putting this set together was an arduous labor of love, and a gift for film lovers everywhere. This set is expensive, but don't let that stop you if you like Melies. It's worth every cent, believe me.
It includes A Trip to the Moon, The Impossible Journey, The Merry Frolics of Satan among many others of his classics which range from less than a minute running time to over a half hour. Trip to the Moon is perhaps most iconically known for the scene where the adventurer's rocket lands near one of the moon's eyes, causing a perceptible squint on its face.
A magician and showman by inclination, many of these classics focus on magic tricks made possible by the use of cinema such as The Man with the Rubber Head where a magician using a billows seems to inflate his assistant's head larger and larger.
Many of the longer classics are narrated by a Frenchman whose voice sounds like a combination of Louis Jourdan and Pepe LePew but it still works because the wording of the narrative was actually written by Melies himself.
Though Edison studios, among others, easily preceded Melies in the production of silent movies (Edison's first experimental production was in 1889) no one matched the artistry and sense of magic Melies so naturally brought to the medium.
At the beginning of the first DVD is a special documentary on Melies in which you meet his wife and son and get to hear the waltz Melies composed for his wife. You also learn that after Melies was forced out of the movie making business he turned to selling children's toys in a children's toy store.
The idea of this wonderful man still focused on providing wonder even after his movie career only enhances our appreciation of this genuis who first piloted us to the realms of the (im)possible through his movie making magic.