Playing Cards (French: Une partie de cartes), or Card Party, is an 1896 French short black-and-white silent film by Georges Méliès. It was the first film in Méliès’ prolific career, and thus is number one in his Star Film catalogue. It is a remake of Louis Lumière’s film The Messers. Lumière at Cards, which was released earlier the same year. Along with Georges Méliès himself, his brother Gaston Méliès and daughter Georgette Méliès both appear in the film.
The film depicts a typical afternoon scene in a French garden. Three men are sitting at a table, two of them playing cards while the third smokes and reads a newspaper. The man who is not playing cards calls over a young girl and has her fetch a woman with a bottle of wine. He proceeds to pour glasses for himself and his friends. After drinking the wine, the man reads a story out of the newspaper causing his friends to laugh. The film lasts roughly 67 seconds
Felix, an introverted researcher, asks the worldly Dr. Voluntas to guide him toward worldly pleasures. Dr. Voluntas accepts the invitation and leads his laboratory rival down the path of dissipation.
One striking motif is that of a sweeping darkness associated with Voluntas’ control over Felix.
Directed By –
Gunnar Tolnæs Doctor Voluntas
Carlo Wieth Doctor Felix
Johanne Blom Fritz-Petersen Margaret
Henry Seemann Vincent Lieutenant, Margaret’s brother
Betzy Kofoed Sara, Margaret and Vincent’s Aunt
Arne Weel Seidel, medical student
Ellen Møller maid
Doctor Voluntas [Danish], Le Docteur Voluntas [French], The Master Physician [English], Folly of Sin [English], El Dr. Voluntas [Spanish], Dammon’s Triumphe [German], Under Friendship’s Mask [English], The Victory will [Norwegian], The victorious will [Danish], the will that wins [Swedish]
Danish Silent Movie with English subtitles available
Two men are operating a ‘dog factory’, using a device that they call a Dog Transformator. A man brings three dogs into their shop, which they purchase from him. They place the dogs one by one into the machine, which turns each dog into a string of sausages. As their customers come in, they are then able to select the kind of dog that they want, and the machine changes the corresponding string of sausages back into a dog.
Director: Edwin S. Porter
Production company: Edison Studios
Cinematography: Edwin S. Porter