Best Movies of 1899
The Kiss in the Tunnel
A humorous subject intended to be run as a part of a railroad scene during the period in which the train is passing through a tunnel.
Will Evans, the Musical Eccentric
Upside Down; or, The Human Flies
A magician performs tricks. First with a top hat, then with his audience.
Summoning the Spirits
A bearded man hangs up a wreath and, like any good magician, waves his hands inside of it and under it to show us it's only a wreath…
In the Grip of the Blizzard
"This is a very remarkable picture, showing Union Square, New York City, during the great March blizzard of 1899. The camera was stationed at the corner of Broadway and Fourteenth Street, and was swept in almost a complete circle, showing the tremendous drifts of snow and the blockade at 'Dead Man's Curve' in Fourteenth Street. This picture was taken during the busiest time of the day, and shows to what extent New York City was tied up by this tremendous fall of snow." (AMB Picture Catalogue (1902)
Intérieur d'une imprimerie (tirage d'une épreuve)
Within a printing (printing a test).
The Human Pyramid
Méliès appears as a court jester (a “triboulet” in French). He pulls 18th century noblemen out of a trunk and arranges them on a pyramid-shaped stage. Next, he transforms the gentlemen into fancy ladies.
Ladies' Skirts Nailed to a Fence
Two (cross-dressing) housewives gossip before they're abused by a couple of men. The film doesn't make clear what they're talking about or if there's a reason they're attacked, but an accompanying set of cards by the production company indicates that the ladies were engaged in a discussion about the women's suffrage.
The chariot and battle of confetti
This view represents the passage of a decorated chariot; The many spectators fight with confetti.
Arabian Gun Twirler
"An interesting exhibit by Hadji Cheriff, of the original Midway Plaisance. Twirls his rifle over his shoulder, behind back, under leg, both hands and one hand."
Matches: An Appeal
A thirty-second long stop-motion animated piece intended to encourage the audience to send matches to British troops fighting the Boer War.
Based on Shakespeare's play, Act V, Scene vii: King John is in torment, and his supporters fear that his end is near. As he writhes in agony, he is attended by Prince Henry, the Earl of Pembroke, and Robert Bigot. Prince Henry tries repeatedly to comfort his delirious father, but to no avail - John's pain is too great.
Panorama from the Tower of the Brooklyn Bridge
Filmed from the Brooklyn tower of the bridge, this is a panorama starting at Manhattan's Battery and then panning northward along the East River shoreline. Reportedly filmed somewhere between 1897 - 1899, though not copyrighted until 1903.
Across Brooklyn Bridge
This picture is very novel and interesting. It gives the complete trip from the station at the New York City end of the bridge to the station at the Brooklyn end, as seen from the front end of a third rail car running at high speed. The entire trip consumes three minutes of time, during which abundant opportunity is given to observe all the structural wonders of the bridge, and far distant river panorama below.
104th Street Curve, New York, Elevated Railway
Taken from the front platform of a special train run backward over this celebrated S curve. Not only are the passing trains and crowded platforms of great interest, but the view of uptown New York is an excellent one, showing acre upon acre of roofs, towers, steeples and towering apartment houses. As the 'special' slows up at 92nd street, a Harlem express dashes by, the engineer leaning out of his cab, and waving a good-bye.
A Wringing Good Joke
"Grandpa sits nodding in his armchair in the kitchen, where a sout, jolly washerwoman is washing clothes. While the woman leaves the tub to talk to a book agent, a small boy enters, and ties grandpa's chair to a towel which is hanging over the tub. The washerwoman begins vigorously wringing the clothes. The towel is drawn into the wringer, and as grandpa is sitting with his feet on the stove and the chair tilted back, a collision is brought about by the towel pulling grandpa and the tub together. This is a crowning success as a comic picture."—Edison Catalog
New Brooklyn to New York via Brooklyn Bridge, No. 2
“This is a new negative showing the entire trip from Brooklyn to New York, in which the immense towers stand out clear and distinct against the sky. Positively the best picture of the Brooklyn Bridge yet secured.” (Edison film catalog)
Lower Falls, Grand Canyon, Yellowstone Park
Probably part of the "Alaska and Yellowstone National Park Series" in the "Northern Pacific Railway Series"
'Columbia' Winning the Cup
This picture shows the Columbia crossing the line, leading the Shamrock by about 1/2 mile. The Shamrock is plainly seen in the distance and she later comes up and crosses the line in the same picture.
The famous Parisian chanteuse in the rag-time cakewalk 'Hello, Ma Baby,' with which she made such a sensation at the New York Theatre.
Amann, the Great Impersonator
"In his characterization of Capt. Dreyfus and Emile Zola."
Capture of Trenches at Candaba
The Filipinos execute a flank movement and re-occupy the trenches, cutting off the advance guard of Americans. The rebel flag waves over the ditch and they defend their positions bravely. A fierce charge by our soldiers makes them give way and they scatter in all directions. The officer in command pays dearly for his desperate sortie.
Admiral Dewey Leading Land Parade, No. 2
Showing Central Park in the background.
Filipinos Retreat from Trenches
Reenactment of action in the Spanish-American War.
Skirmish of Rough Riders
Shielded by a thick bit of timber at a turn of the road stands a company of mounted men, awaiting the order to advance...
Around the Big Curves on the Manhattan Elevated R.R.
Taken from the front end of a locomotive following an express train at high speed around the high curves of the Ninth Avenue Elevated, from the 104th to 116th Street station. This section, with its reverse curve, is known as "The Big Loop", and is the highest (at over 100 feet) and most dangerous section on the New York Elevated. During the trip, Grant's Tomb, Columbia College buildings, the new Cathedral of St. John The Divine, and Morningside Park, as well as a portion of the north end of Central Park are visible.
Naval Exercise, United Kingdom
Charlie Wanted the Earth
A couple are making love beneath the window of a cranky old gentleman. There is a handsome window garden above them filled with plants and flowers. The old gentleman throws out a rope upon the lovers to annoy them. They, not knowing what it is, seize it and pull the window garden down upon themselves.
Launch of the 'Oceanic'
"A magnificent picture of the launching of the 'Oceanic,' which up to that time was the largest vessel ever floated. The view is taken from a pier out over the water; the vessel coming stern on towards the camera and passing it by. A tremendous wave is thrown among the spectators crowded at the side of the pier, and the great excitement prevailing is very evident in the picture." (Belfast)
Audience Leaving Circus Carré After the Biograph Show in Amsterdam
While he was trying, Dickson made the same sort of movie that others had before him. This is an imitation.of a Lumiere picture of people leaving a show of their pictures.
The Maniac Barber
This scene is laid in a barber shop. A customer enters and takes his seat in the chair. The barber places the cloth about his neck, sharpens his razor, and then goes mad. He seizes a huge knife, cuts the man's head off, and takes it to a table some distance away. There he lathers and shaves the face; then taking the head back to the chair, he places it in his proper position on the trunk. The customer thereupon rises, none the worse for his experience, pays his bill, and leaves the shop.
The Inexhaustible Cab
A cab is hailed in front of a palatial mansion by a gentleman who wishes a score of people driven to another part of the city. A clown jumps out and a satisfactory agreement is made between the clown and the gentleman, and a score or so of persons are hustled in one at a time until the clown succeeds in piling in the whole lot except Bridget, who is carrying a child. The persistent clown, in order to assist the nurse, who tips the scale at 400 pounds, takes the child from her. After caressing it he tosses it on top of the cab. He then picks up a board and uses it with good effect on the extremities of the fat woman, until she is forced into the cab, which drives away with its load of humanity.
Floral Parade of Lady Cyclists
This is a ladies cycling display in the summer of 1899 in London, England. It is a display/show by the Catford Cycling Club.
A Midnight Episode
A sleeping apartment of a friend who retires for the night. The rays of the moon are shining upon the bed through the window. He is suddenly awakened by a bug of gigantic proportions crawling over him. This he attacks and destroys, but before again retiring he notices three more climbing up the wall. He lights the candle and applies the flame to each, causing them to explode with fine smoke effect. After this slaughter he retires in contentment and soon sleeps the sleep of the just. A very funny subject.
Battery K Siege Guns
A parade of soldiers.
The Landing of Savage South Africa at Southampton
Members of the 'Savage South Africa' troupe at Southampton Docks. The film shows a group of Africans (Zulus) in full tribal attire at Southampton docks.
The Corset Model
The scene opens with a salesman displaying corsets to the buyer of a country store. He calls in a female model and tries a corset on her. While the buyer is looking at the figure, the salesman removes the head and arms and finally shows that instead of legs, she has a wire frame. This is one of the most effective trick pictures in our list.
Poker at Dawson City
People spill drink on themselves, supposedly after a poker game during the Yukon Gold Rush.
Fregoli barbiere mago
A man with a heavy beard and long hair comes into a barber shop. The barber wets down his hair, does a thorough job of cutting, leaving customer with a big bald patch, then wets down his hair again, and the man leaves with his hair intact as at the start.
"Shamrock" and "Erin" Sailing
The Shamrock is seen after its defeat in the 1899 America's Cup, along with the Erin, which served as its tow boat across the Atlantic.
Panoramic View of Windsor Castle
Film by W.K.L. Dickson; Rounding a bend in the track, we behold Windsor Castle.
Le singe voltigeur
A monkey and his trainer do acrobatics in a small enclosure.
It looks like peasants dancing in their holiday finery, the women wearing long skirts, the men britches and flowered hats. They set into pairs and walk in a circle, while the fiddler plays.
Judging Ladies' Saddle Horses
Well-known horse-women and their mounts riding before the judge's stand at the Open Air Horse Show, Manhattan Field, N.Y. City.
A couple of women stand in a field, using pitch forks to separate burning grass. Men run away from the event. Meanwhile, a third woman stands to the right, drinking what I would guess is water from a pitcher, instead of using it to put out the fire.
Fregoli soldato I
Leopoldo Fregoli as a flirting soldier.
La serenata di Fregoli
Leopoldo Fregoli plays the guitar to set-up a gag.
Dewey Parade, 10th Pennsylvania Volunteers
In [Admiral] Dewey land parade.
Tolhuis! Kiele! Kiele!
As Camilla sleeps in the garden of Tollhouse Inn, Roland steals a vial of elixir from under her skirt.