This film is part of Free

The Puzzled Bather and His Animated Clothes

An entertaining early film 'trick'

Trick film 1901 1 mins Silent


The more ambitious early filmmakers were quick to test out the new medium's capacity for what we now call 'special effects'. In this 'trick' film by James Williamson, clever editing and film reversal combine to continually frustrate the bather's efforts to bathe. Williamson, one of the group of pioneering filmmakers to operate in and around Brighton at the turn of the century, included this film in his Kinematograph Catalogue of 1902, promising, among other things, "one of the funniest effects of reversing."

The filmmaking landscape of the time was full of trick films like this, testament to the public appetite for effects unachievable in any other visual medium. This example is one of many that demonstrate the wit of early film experiments.