Best Movies of 1905
Rescued by Rover
A dog leads its master to his kidnapped baby.
The Night Before Christmas
On Christmas Eve, Santa feeds his reindeer and loads his sleigh, before going on his journey to deliver toys to the children of the world.
Coney Island at Night
A panorama of Coney Island, taken at night: the camera sweeps across the scene from a vantage point well above the area. It then moves in for closer views of Dreamland and Luna Park.
New York Subway
The camera platform was on the front of a New York subway train following another train on the same track. Lighting is provided by a specially constructed work car on a parallel track. At the time of filming, the subway was only seven months old, having opened on October 27, 1904. The ride begins at 14th Street (Union Square) following the route of today's east side IRT, and ends at the old Grand Central Station, built by Cornelius Vanderbuilt in 1869. The Grand Central Station in use today was not completed until 1913.
Preston North End v Aston Villa
Early football footage from Mitchell & Kenyon.
Down in the Coal Mines
A father and son are working in a coal mine. An explosion occurs, which kills the son.
The Life of Charles Peace
The story of Charles Peace, one of Britain's most notorious criminals. Peace was an expert in cat burglary. The film reconstructs Peace's real-life leap from a train on his way to trial for the murder of Arthur Dyson.
How Jones Lost His Roll
Jones is on his way home, carrying a roll of money, when he meets a neighbor who is a notorious miser. The neighbor unexpectedly invites Jones to dinner, and serves him a large meal with plenty of wine. After dinner, the neighbor suggests a way of passing the time - and soon his real intentions become clear.
Ulysses and the Giant Polyphemus
An early horror treatment of the hero's encounter with the one-eyed man-eating Cyclops.
Various scenes from New Testament and Old: Christian martyrdom under Roman rule, Daniel in the lion's den, and Belshazzar's vision of a floating hand spelling the end of his rule.
The Train Wreckers
A romance between a railroad engineer and the switchman's daughter is nearly ruined by train wreckers who knock out the girl and leave her on the tracks to be run over. The engineer perches on the engine's cow catcher and rescues the girl.
The White Caps
Two members of a vigilante group known as 'The White Caps' post a warning sign on a man's home. When the man comes home, he tears down the sign, and then proceeds to abuse his wife both verbally and physically. As soon as she can get away from him, the wife leaves home with her child to find a place of refuge. When the vigilantes find out about this, they arm themselves with rifles and immediately go to confront the abusive husband.
The Unfortunate Policeman
Early comedic chase film from Robert W Paul.
A happy Russian family is broken up when their patriarch is arrested for treason. His distraught wife joins the secret society of nihilists and is assigned to commit an act of terror. Based on the play "Vera; or, The Nihilists" by Oscar Wilde.
Midwinter Bathing, L Street Bath, Boston
This film was photographed in the winter, much of it during an actual snowstorm, and snow can be seen on the ground in all scenes. The subject is a group of men, clothed only in swimming trunks, who demonstrate their physical prowess by doing calisthenics, playing handball, and swimming during freezing weather.
Nothing to do with potties... Baby gets a good wash. In this charming Hepworth actuality film a crisply uniformed, no-nonsense nurse bounces a baby girl on her lap before submerging the unsuspecting infant into a tub of soapy water. The baby is surprisingly content to be so vigorously sponged and rinsed but somewhat less happy when extracted from the suds and deposited onto a set of unwelcoming metal weighing scales. Once back on a familiar lap, however, the baby delights in being dried, powdered and expertly pampered. (Catherine McGahan)
Panorama from Times Building, New York
The camera is high above Manhattan near the top of the Times Building, pointing down.
2 A.M. in the Subway
A constable and a subway attendant are working late at night in an underground station when a well-dressed man with a cigar in his teeth enters with his arms around two women dressed in long skirts and jackets, gloves, and fancy hats. The trio laugh and stumble on the platform as if having a hilarious time, getting the attention of the policeman who attempts to stop their bawdy behavior.
Police Chasing Scorching Auto
Police officers pursue a speeding automobile that almost hit a small child. This short is an outtake from Life of an American Policeman (1905). Once that film had been edited to fit a standard 1,000 foot reel, this sequence was left over, so it was sold as a separate short.
The Life of an American Policeman
A policeman has breakfast with his wife and children, and then prepares for the day's work. While on his beat, he finds and helps a lost child. Later, several officers try to save a woman who has attempted to drown herself. And there are some even more hazardous situations yet to come.
Peeping Tom in the Dressing Room
A young man leers through a peephole in the wall separating two dressing rooms, but he is caught, and is humiliated by his victim.
I.B. Dam and the Whole Dam Family
One at a time, we meet eight members of the Dam family.
The Other Side of the Hedge
Two romantic suitors avoid their wet-blanket chaperone by way of the titular hedge.
Prankster switches the babies in two prams. Hijinks ensue.
Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son
Based loosely on the once-popular nursery rhyme. A fair is in progress, with refreshments, entertainment, and other activities. As the rest of the crowd is watching one of the acts, the titular Tom steals a pig from another little boy and runs off. He tries to hide, but he is chased by the crowd. The pig also proves difficult to control. Tom, the little boy, and the crowd run from place to place.
Raffles, the Amateur Cracksman
A film adaptation of the play by E. W. Hornung and Eugene Wiley Presbrey.
Les farces de Toto Gâte-Sauce
The apprentice at a pastry shop is more interested in playing tricks on people than sweeping the pavement in front of the shop; more interested in eating the pies with a friend than in delivering them; and so, when the butts of all his tricks set off after him, he runs.... but takes a few swipes at them.
Two men get into a knife fight, in a possibly Spanish tavern, and and one of them kills another and escapes. He takes refuge in his house but escapes when the guard arrives, starting a persecution to the death.
The story of a group of counterfeiters, caught, and then escaping from prison.
Vot'permis. Viens l'chercher!
A poacher eludes a gendarme with the help of some trick photography.
Odyssée d'un paysan à Paris
A peasant goes to Paris to sell a couple of rabbits and everything he finds in the city surprises and amazes him, which causes fun to the Parisians. But they steal his rabbits and he also ends up in prison.
L'assassinat du grand-duc Serge
The assassination of the Grand Duke Serge.
Les petits vagabonds
A couple of young boys clamber over a fence and break into the hen coop. They steal some eggs and a fat chicken. The adults are after them, but the boys start a fire by accident and lead the adults on a long chase.
The Mutiny on the Potemkin
Mutiny on a Russian Battleship.
Les voleurs d'enfants
A gang of child thieves take one away and hand him over to other gypsies who dress him in rags and cruelly mistreat him. The boy wants to escape and the police find them. The father shoots one of the gypsies and the others are happily arrested.
A Kentucky Feud
A fictionalized account of the Hatfields and the McCoys.
During a raid, a police officer is shot, and a woman is mistakenly arrested for the crime. Despite the pleas of her mother, she is sentenced to Siberia, but she dies along the way. Her mother decides to take revenge.
Peace Envoys at Portsmouth, N.H.
I'm not sure why the negotiations that ended the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-5 took place in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, but President Theodore Roosevelt had been flexing the United States' power in the world. He had offered to mediate an end to the the war. Russia agreed because of the shocking losses they had suffered at Mukden and Tsushima, and the naval revolt in Odessa. Japan had agreed because they feared a drawn-out war would cripple them financially. Besides, the treaty's terms gave them control of Korea. This film documents the world leaders presence in Portsmouth with military parades and naval ships.
Scenes at Creusot's Steel Foundry
An actuality which chronicles how a load of ore becomes a finished steel product at a Bessemer plant. Deep red tints and red-hot pops of hand-coloring give the film an ominous glow.
Les cartes lumineuses
A gentleman returns to his home office to find that the porter is smoking his cigars and has the housemaid on his knee.
Poison or Whiskey
A man wins a girl by pretending to take poison.
Les étrennes du facteur
It's Christmas time, so it's obligatory to give a gift to everyone, even the guy who's paid to do a job, and often paid very well. It's a yearly routine, and it used to annoy my father no end,, particularly when it came to unionized workers, like post men. So here we see the post man make his way through the building, making a fuss over each piece of mail, and expecting a tip. Don't his employers pay him?
A team of surgeons open a patient's stomach and discover a surprising variety of objects.
Adventures of Sherlock Holmes
The millionaire's child is kidnapped. Sherlock Holmes after many thrilling adventures and narrow escapes rescues the child.
On a Good Old 5¢ Trolley Ride
Amusing characters board an unsteady trolley at each stop, and then abandon the streetcar in order to chase a man who brought on board a basket full of snakes that got loose. A goose gets involved in the chase, and is stolen by a tramp. The chase ends when the crowd arrives at a stream that the tramp has already crossed, with the goose under his arm.
A gentleman sits down and sees the prospective brides. They are all beautiful of face and form, and each carries a scroll on which her dowry is written in large letters.
Across the Subway Viaduct, New York
A train ride of New York.
Au jardin zoologique de Paris
A visit to the zoo.
Duel Scene from Macbeth
Based on a scene from Shakespeare's play: Macbeth, king of Scotland, is being challenged by forces led by Macduff. Young Siward comes to confront the king, but Macbeth kills him easily. Then Macduff himself arrives. The two rivals exchange words, and then begin a deadly fight.
Building a British Railway Arrival of the Scotch Express at Rugby
It's the view out of a railroad car near the engine as it navigates among a choice of tracks and takes off through the countryside.