Best Drama Movies of 1908
Dreams of Toyland
Arthur Melbourne Cooper's animation showing a boy's dream of his toys coming to life uses a live action framing device for the dream sequence which uses stop motion techniques to animate a child's toys.
Rescued from an Eagle's Nest
A woodsman leaves a hut followed by a woman with their baby. Nearby some men chop down a tree. The baby is left outside the hut, but an eagle flies away with it.
The Adventures of Dollie
On a warm and sunny summer's day, a mother and father take their young daughter Dollie on a riverside outing.
Julius Caesar, an Historical Tragedy
Biographical drama, adaptation of Shakespeare's play.
Over the Hills to the Poor House
The widowed elderly mother of three adult children, two sons and a daughter, wishing to relieve herself of the burden of care of her property, decides to divide it up among her children. To her son Charles, a wild but kind young fellow, she leaves a small amount, feeling that he will soon run through it. The good-hearted boy is perfectly satisfied, believing in the wisdom of his mother's actions. He assumes she will find a home with one of his siblings, who are married and settled. The old woman moves in with her married son, but is driven out by his wife over an argument about her young granddaughter. She is forced to move into a squalid apartment in a cheap tenement house, but is evicted for failing to pay her rent. Mack Sennett appears as a bartender in this film.
The central figure is an old miser, a Harpagon of sorts, who, like Frosine, stashes his ill-gotten money in a secret cellar. While the miser is at the bank, exchanging stolen notes for gold coin, a couple of thugs witness the transaction and see their opportunity-- It seems avarice grips the hearts of all those who'd possess the bag.
When Knights Were Bold
Two noblemen fight over a lady.
Where the Breakers Roar
Mack Sennett appears as a policeman in this film produced by the Biograph Company.
The Black Viper
A thug accosts a girl as she leaves her workplace but a man rescues her. The thug vows revenge and, with the help of two friends, attacks the girl and her rescuer again as they're going for a walk. This time they succeed in kidnapping the rescuer. The girl runs home and gets help from several neighbors. They track the ruffians down to a cabin in the mountains where the gang has trapped their victim and set the cabin on fire.
Justinian's Human Torches
During an orgy, Emperor Justinian orders three people to be torched alive.
Vitagraph production of Shakespeare's Richard III.
An Awful Moment
After a judge (Harry Solter) does his job and sentences a man, a gypsy woman (Marion Leonard) erupts in vehement protests and has to be taken forcefully out of the courtroom. Later the gypsy follows the judge to his home and plots a vicious revenge on his wife (Florence Lawrence).
Humanity Through the Ages
An episodic narrative displaying examples of humankind's brutality, from the story of Cain and Abel through the Hague Convention of 1907.
The Man and the Woman
John and Tom Wilkins are brothers and most divergent in natures. John is a clergyman and a noble, upright fellow, while Tom is a scapegrace, wild, reckless and unscrupulous. Not having the parental guidance so essential in youth, his father being dead and his mother blind, he drifted into bad company, the contaminating influence deeply affecting his susceptible nature.
For a Wife's Honor
Irving Robertson, a successful playwright, has just received a message from out of town to witness the initial performance of one of his plays. As he is about to leave, Henderson, the manager, calls to pay a sum due him for royalties. At the same time, Frank Wilson, a friend of the family, drops in.
The Test of Friendship
Mack Sennett appears as a guest and a man in the fight in this film produced by the Biograph Company.
Le corso tragique
When the father of high-born son refuses to let him marry the beautiful seafood seller, she and her brothers determine on a grisly vengeance.
The Stolen Jewels
It would have taken more than the wonderful powers of deduction of a Sherlock Holmes to have dispelled the mystery that shrouded the disappearance of a case of jewels at the home of Robert Jenkins, a wealthy stockbroker, and although they were eventually brought to light, it was through a most remarkable accident.
A Christmas Carol
Scrooge goes into his office and begins working. His nephew, along with three women who wish for Scrooge to donate enter. However, Scrooge dismisses them. On the night of Christmas Eve, his long-dead partner Jacob Marley comes as a ghost, warning him of a horrible fate if he does not change his ways.
Dans le sous-marin
A submarine coming into port is seen gliding smoothly on the water and the little rowboat which is to bring the captain of the vessel to his post is seen leaving for shore. We see the dashing young officer bidding his love adieu, and then seating himself in the frail craft is soon once more on duty at the wheel. Away they go, and reaching the wide sea the ship gives a lurch and disappears under the water.
In this interesting picture we are given a vivid idea of the principal incidents connected with the Dreyfus case, which caused such a stir in military circles in the year of 1894. Alfred Dreyfus, an officer on the general staff, was charged with selling secrets to a foreign power. He was tried and judged guilty on flimsy evidence, and sentenced to imprisonment on Devil's Island, where he remained for eight years, until his influential friends, who took up his case in earnest, proved it was a plot formed by other officers, who subsequently confessed to having forged the documents.
Hansel und Gretel
Behind the Scenes: Where All Is Not Gold That Glitters
A mother works as a dancer to support her ill daughter. One night while performing, the mother has a vision of her child dying. She rushes home, but it is too late. -- IMDB
Le mystère de la montagne
In this interesting little drama we are brought in contact with a man who is one of the highly respected citizens of a little mountain village, while in reality he is living a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde existence. We see him leave his home and go on his way up into the mountain to hunt. When he reaches a remote part in the forest he takes a black cape and mask from under a rock and puts them on, thus concealing his identity.
The Planter's Wife
John Holland, a planter in a small way, is devotedly attached to his wife and infant child. The wife wearies of the monotonous grind of farm life and is easy prey of a contemptible villain, in the person of Tom Roland, the ubiquitous "other man".
Antony and Cleopatra, a Love Story of the Noblest Roman and the Most Beautiful Egyptian
A short film based on William Shakespeare's play of the same name. It was the first film to dramatize the ill-fated romance between Mark Antony and Cleopatra VII of Egypt.
Prospero and his daughter Miranda must take refuge on an enchanted island. There Prospero, who himself has magical powers, releases the spirit Ariel from a spell, and also meets the savage Caliban. Then Prospero uses his powers to create a tempest that shipwrecks some of the persons who caused his exile.
Francesca di Rimini; or, The Two Brothers
Francesca, surrounded by ladies-in-waiting at the palace. Her father enters, and together they read a letter from Lanciotto, asking for the hand of Francesca. Both are overjoyed at the union of the two great houses in marriage, and the daughter retires to dress for Lanciotto's arrival.
The Viking's Daughter: The Story of the Ancient Norsemen
A Saxon prisoner rescues his Viking's captor's daughter, resulting in his freedom and their marriage.
The Lucky Farrier
A Danish advertisement film with a man proposing to his girl.
The Music Master
What is more miserable than love-blighted life? For the heart that truly loves can never forget. Such is the sad fate of the hero of this Biograph story.
The Last Cartridge, an Incident of the Sepoy Rebellion in India
Caught off-guard by Indian mutineers, a British soldier saves his last bullet for his daughter lest she be taken. This silent film features an original, scene-specific piano score compiled from period appropriate photoplay music.
A young beggar girl and her aged mother are tramping along the road when a motor car passing swiftly by knocks down the older woman just in front of the gates of a fine castle. The poor beggar girl, at the sight of her dead mother, calls for help, and her cries of despair are heard by the residents of the castle, who, being kind-hearted people, take the young girl away from the body of her dead mother, although the poor orphan fights desperately to remain besides what was once all the world to her.
The Scarlet Letter
"The Scarlet Letter" is a story of early Puritan days in New England. Hester, a beautiful young Englishwoman, is sent to America by her husband, with a promise that he will follow on the next ship. But he falls to keep his promise and Hester does not hear from him in years. In the meantime she is befriended by a young Puritan minister. Friendship ripens into love and Hester, thinking her husband dead, loves the handsome young clergyman with her whole heart. But when the baby is born the minister, fearing the wrath of the Pilgrim Fathers, denies it and Hester is condemned to wear the Scarlet Letter and to stand in the pillory. And it is only after several years of Hester's shame and ignominy that the little child finally reaches the father's heart. Then comes the great scene. The minister, on a fête day, ascends the pillory, places himself where Hester had been placed, and publicly proclaims his sin.
In the Time of Rebellion
In a British barrack in India is confined a tamed gorilla which has conceived a hatred for one of the Hindoo attendants, owing to the barbarous treatment which the Hindoo accords the beast. This attendant proves to be a traitor to the British interests, and avails himself of his opportunities to possess himself of military papers and secrets which he carries to his friends in the rebel camp. (Moving Picture World)
About an Acadian girl named Evangeline and her search for her lost love Gabriel, set during the time of the Expulsion of the Acadians, the forced removal by the British of the Acadian people from the present day Canadian Maritime provinces of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island - parts of an area also known as Acadia.
The Man in the Box
A poorly compensated bank clerk is, we may say, to that trying position of "Tantalus" in sight of tons of money but not a dollar of his own. This became more torturing as time went on, until at last, when the bank was arranging to ship a large quantity of cash to the West to relieve the recent money stringency, he made up his mind to heed the solicitude of that specter which had haunted him. Listening to the instructions given to the bank's messenger as to the shipment of the funds, he hustles off to a gang of crooks in whose company he had fallen.