This film is part of Free
How We Filmed in the Nineties
A whistlestop tour of early filmmaking, from street scenes to a thrilling Western.
Amateur film 1936 24 mins Silent
The title of this home-made compilation is a little disingenuous, as the films span at least 20 years. Nevertheless, it's a whirlwind overview of the filmmaking habits of those decades, starting with the archetypal actuality film - the street scene, all bustling traffic and modernity - and ending with an elaborate genre production - a Western with action set-pieces and a tough-as-nails female lead.
While watching the film from beginning to end might not make for the most coherent viewing experience, it's a heady reminder of the sheer heterogeneity of film in its first decades.
Kidnapping by Indians (1899)
Drama 1899 2 mins Silent Location: Blackburn
Out-takes of the world's earliest ever 'Western' film.
Comedy 1901 2 mins Silent Location: Glasgow
Young scamps launch a snowball attack on a hapless bobby.
Interest film 1903 2 mins Silent
What’s in your cheese? The microscopic mites here are unpleasant today but caused a sensation in 1903, in one of the Britain’s earliest exhibited scientific films.
First X-ray Cinematograph Film Ever Taken
Frogs legs on film: trailblazing Victorian medical research
Drama 1899 1 mins Silent
The first ever Shakespearean film - once thought to be lost - with Herbert Beerbohm Tree in the title role.
A Woman Undressing
Pornography 1896 1 mins Silent
A treat for Victorian voyeurs - and Britain's oldest erotic film?
ABC in Sound
Animation & Artists Moving Image 1933 2 mins
Hand-drawn sound experiment by Bauhaus professor László Moholy-Nagy.
Hovis: Boy on the Bike
Advert 1974 1 mins Location: Shaftesbury
A classic slice of British advertising history, though that hill's not as Northern as it looks...
Workforce of Parkgate Iron and Steel Co., Rotherham (1901)
Non-Fiction 1901 3 mins Silent Location: Rotherham
Edwardian workers react to the camera at one of Rotherham's major employers.
Workforce of Ormerod's Mill, Great Moor Street, Bolton (1900)
Non-Fiction 1900 1 mins Silent Location: Great Moor St, Bolton
Eager youngsters burst out of the gates of a Victorian cotton mill.
The Henley Regatta
Sport 1901 1 mins Silent Location: Henley-on-Thames
It's the first weekend of July 1901, and high society are on the Thames
Advert 1898 1 mins Silent Location: St Pancras
An unusual farewell in this charming early film