This film is part of Free

Up the River

A river tragedy is narrowly averted in this early dramatic scene

Drama 1896 1 mins Silent


This early dramatic scene credited to RW Paul shows a daring rescue after a child falls from a steam launch into a river. It's a promising scenario, but sadly the power of the scene suffers a lot from an ill-chosen camera position. We (just) see the child fall into the water, and we get a sense of the urgency of the situation from the behaviour of the spectators on the bank, our view of the rescue itself is almost entirely obscured.

Still, it's a notable staging post in film's evolution: such missteps were a necessary part of the learning experience for early filmmakers.