Friday, August 12, 2011

His Great Uncle's Spirit -1912

His Great Uncle's Spirit: One reel of approximately 1,000 feet, March 8, 1912.
Full of amazing trick situations that will leave you dazed and delighted!
Print source: George Eastman House, 14 minutes 9 seconds.
Cast: George Ober (miser)
Original music composed and performed by Ben Model (
Rapid advancement in film technique is seen in His Great Uncle’s Spirit. Especially in the opening theater sequence, and in the climactic “transformation” sequence, several different shots are edited together to create a fluid, dynamic scene. Cinematography shows the first spark of flexibility with a couple of tilting movements. There is a new energy in direction with strong fore-to-back staging. There are also some insert close-ups and some relatively unusual medium close-ups of action.
Despite all the stylistic skill, the story is the entertainment, about a vaudeville magician down on his luck, who takes a secretarial job and uses magic tricks to transform his mean skinflint boss into a generous man.
Ben Model’s expert organ accompaniment indicates how effective the music can be in, among other things, foiling the most extremely emotive silent movie acting.

For futher information on films by Thanhouser, visit the site above. Let’s keep memories of this great studio alive.

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