You are on page 1of 2

Last June 22, 2012, the class watched two silent movies.

That was the first time I had watched such films. When I think of silent movies, I think of them as boring since it is silent however my perceptions changed when I was able to watch those silent movies. The first film we watched was A Trip to the Moon (1905) which is narrated throughout. It was about a group of astronomers who plan to go to the moon. In order for them to go to the moon, they build a space capsule shaped like a bullet which should be put on a bullet that will shoot the capsule. The capsule successfully landed on the face of the moon. The astronomers, after sleeping, began to stroll around and discovered creatures like alien inhabiting the moon and also big mushrooms. It was a fun movie treat for that morning. I found myself laughing at every scene. The concept of the story was interesting. I never thought that at 1902, there is already the concept of life outside the earth though I do not really know if that should be the very first time. I believe the movie is one of the early science fiction films. As we all know, oxygen is scarce outside the earth and as an astronomer, you would have to wear outfit that would cover you all throughout and that is designed for you to be able to breathe. But, it is amazing how the astronomers of the film were able to breathe normal. Also, you could see how innovative and creative the writer was by the concept of using a large bullet to be shot through a canon which would serve as the spacecraft of the astronomers. Moreover, by just pushing the large bullet out of the moons surface by a single man, they were able to get back to the earth since they were being chased by the alien inhabitants. There were also special effects which are very simple yet very creative. One thing I had noticed throughout the film is that one scene is shot in one angle which is the front view. But, I think that one camera is used throughout the shooting and taking a scene in different angles is not common by then. The film seemed like a stage play since the scenes were shot on a stage with different props hanging on the ceiling. The class also watched The Birth of Nation (1915) directed by David W. Griffith. The first part of the movie started with the introduction of the Stonemans of Washington D.C. (North), and the Camerons of the South Carolina (South). The Stoneman brothers paid a visit to the Cameron brothers at their estate. After the Stoneman brothers left, war broke out. I was unaware of what was happening at the first scenes since I am not that familiar with the American history though I had guessed that a civil war was going to break out which caused gap between the relationships of both families. Number of battles followed. Two Cameron brothers died. A Stoneman died. Cameron family was in despair after they were attacked by Blacks. Moreover, Ben Cameron, the remaining son alive, got wounded and was brought to the hospital where he met Elsie Stoneman, his dreamgirl. Mrs. Cameron went also to the hospital and found out that his son was charged to death. Elsie helped Mrs. Cameron by bringing her to President Abraham Lincoln who allowed her son to live. Battle continued until South surrendered to the North.

Some of the scenes actually brought me suspense maybe because of the background music and of the transitions. I had noticed the fade to and from black transition. When its fading to and from black, there was a change in the scene and sometimes, of time. Moreover, there is also the cut which I think signified that two events were simultaneously happening. I think these things help build up suspense on the viewer. In addition, I think that the film is made on the grounds of racism because of the appearance and portrayal of Blacks in the film. The introduction and the second part of the film showed that the Blacks are the ultimate enemies of the Whites who caused families (the Stonemans and the Camerons) turning against each other. Since we were not able to finish the Reconstruction (the second) part of the film due to some technical problems, I just read its synopsis over the Internet. Based from what I have read, the director obviously showed racism towards the end of the film. Whites were reunited again to take refuge from the black militia who came to power after the death of Lincoln. Meanwhile, I have also learned lessons from the film such as the importance of family and of friends. I also learned from the film how dangerous war could be. War has nothing good to bring. War only causes the lives of people who were just tasked to save the honor of their hometown. War creates gaps which could be filled through diplomatic restitution and not through killing.