Friday, July 31, 2015

Summer Rerun: Leaving Work, 1895

Friday, July 31, 2015

Since everyone is in a rush to leave work on Friday afternoons in the summer, I thought I'd once again share this early silent video clip. 

Isabella reporting,

After posting the early film clip from 1896 of a snowball fightthe creation of the pioneering French film-maker Louis Lumière (1864-1948), I looked for more of his work to share here.

This short silent clip is known as Workers Leaving the Lumière Factory in Lyon (La Sortie des Usines Lumière à Lyon), and it's exactly that. Using natural daylight, Lumière set his camera across the street from the exit of his family's factory at closing time and recorded the workers – mostly women, though there are a few men in top hats – leaving for the day, plus a single large, inquisitive dog. Lumière filmed the same scene three times, on three different days, which accounts for the varying light as well as other differences like the carriages that come through the gate.

While I love seeing the clothes worn by everyday working women (plus the hats!), this film is famous for another reason. It was one of ten short films shown together to an audience on December 28, 1895 at the Salon Indien du Grand Cafe on the Boulevard des Capucines in Paris, making this the first public screening of films with an admission fee charged. Each film ran about 50 seconds, shown through a hand-cranked projector. And, as the old saying goes, the rest is history.


Gretchen in Greenwood said...

I think the dog is there to meet one of the cyclists- he seems to recur in the film every time the same guy on a bike exits.

PNLima said...

It is amazing to see what was done back then.

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