Silent films

silent filmsThe term silent cinema is used to describe films (silent films) that did not have synchronized recorded sound and more specifically did not have audio dialogues. In silent movies, dialogues are made through pantomime and title-dialogue cards. The idea of ​​combining moving images with sound is as old as cinema, but due to technical difficulties the synchronization of dialogues became practical at the end of the 1920s. The visual quality of the mute movies – especially those created after 1920 – was often very good. But there is the misconception that these films are primitive with modern facts. This perception exists because often silent movies are played at the wrong speed and because of the wear and tear of the film over time.Ein Pionier des bewegten Bildes war der Chronophotograph Eadweard Muybridge. Seine 1878 entstandenen Serienbilder The Horse in Motion zeigten den genauen Bewegungsablauf bei einem galoppierenden Pferd.A pioneer of the moving image was Eadweard Muybridge. His 1878 series series The Horse in Motion showed theexact movement of a galloping horse.



The first internationally known screening of a short film shot was the presentation of the Roundhay Garden Scene by Louis Le Prince, founder of the Leeds Technical School of Arts. The series of 2.11 seconds, which he himself presumably made on October 14, 1888, depicted four walking persons – in the garden of his in-laws in Roundhay, a suburb of Leeds. Le Prince received a patent for his one-lens camera in 1888. He had developed it since 1886 in experiments inspired by his friend Louis Jacques Mandé Daguerre.

On May 20, 1891, inventor Thomas Edison introduced a kinetographer to the National Federation of Women’s Club. The first public screening then took place on May 9, 1893 in the Brooklyn Institute of Arts and Sciences. [1]

The first cinema-like film screenings, ie film projections for a paying audience, took place in 1895: from 20 May in New York by the Latham family (father Woodville Latham and sons Otway and Gray), from November 1 in the Berlin “Winter Garden” as the last number one Variety program by the brothers Skladanowsky and – with the greatest impact on the history of cinema – from December 28 in Paris by the brothers Lumière.



The Cinematograph invented by the Lumière brothers was at the same time a recording, copying and playback device, in which the film is guided by perforation over gripping teeth in front of the lens. The first presentation of film equipment and material was not held in public: The Brothers Lumière showed on March 22, 1895 their film workers leave the Lumière-Werke a select audience of the social elite. On December 28, 1895 followed the first public commercial presentation in France: In the Paris “Grand Café” the Lumières performed ten of their short films.

The films, which were screened in the early days of the silent film, were mostly only a few seconds long and showed unspectacular scenes from everyday life, but sometimes also played joke scenes. At first they fascinated by their sheer technical feasibility. The interest in further staging grew only years later.