Unseen Cinema 5: Picturing a Metropolis
New York City Unveiled

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13 videos in this playlist

Early Views (1899-1905) - 6 films
Many acknowledge Manhatta (1921) to be the first American avant-garde film. Perhaps, the film should be regarded as a coda to a grand era of New York City films photographed…
Tricks of the Trade (1901-1905) - 4 films
The early "straight" views of New York were embellished with many astonishing film experiments. These fantastic visions of the city were shaped by manipulating filmmaking techniques towards the expressive possibilities…
Looney Lens Series: Split Skyscrapers / Tenth Avenue, NYC
Fox's LOONEY LENS series was launched to humorously highlight special effects camerawork. The split images of skyscrapers and automobiles are uncannily close to those used in Dziga Vertov's The Man…
Scenes from Ford Educational Weekly of Manhattan (c.1916-1927) - 4 films
For eight years, Ford Motor Company produced a weekly film series which was distributed free to theatres and schools. Not overt advertisements for Ford cars, these films instead promoted the…
Manhatta
Strand and Sheeler's only film collaboration was the first consciously produced avant-garde U.S. film and a model for subsequent "city films, though it was released as a New York "scenic"…
Twenty-Four Dollar Island
"You understand that I am speaking of a film in which New York is the central character, not a picture in which individuals are portrayed, which would make New York…
Skyscraper Symphony
"The most fantastic effects were secured in shooting sheer heights.... It was partly the architectural wonder of New York that made the film so stirring, but, really, it was the…
Manhattan Medley
The film was made more or less on a hobby basis by a man named Bonney Powell, who was a cameraman/editor for Fox Movietone News. There are a couple of…
A Bronx Morning
Leyda's first film, shot silent at a time when sound flooded American movie theaters, is a city symphony on an intimate scale, not of a metropolis like Berlin or Moscow…
Footnote to Fact
This is one part of a proposed four-part film intended to document the Great Depression that was to be called As I Walk. The other parts were never completed; consequently,…
“Seeing the World,” Part One - A Visit to New York, N.Y.
The film opens as a sightseeing portrait of New York, with lively narration taking the viewer aboard the New York elevated and subway trains. Then the view from the windows…
The Pursuit of Happiness
Burckhardt's unique vision of the city as a place of marvelous moments focuses on the ebb and flow of people rushing about. As in his still photography, Burckhardt finds the…
Autumn Fire: A Film Poem
Weinberg's second personal film is a poetic evocation of an absent lover as imagined by the central female character, whom Weinberg loved and sought to marry. Very sophisticated editing adds…

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