Friday, March 29, 2013
Reading Watchers Watching: Lecture Notes on Ethnographic Film
Documentaries are as old, even older than the cinema itself. In fact, there were "documentaries" before there were documentary films. In the 19th century slide shows were presented to audiences by lecturers using magic lanterns. Protestant missionaries, for instance, made use of magic lantern shows to display to audiences the horrors of colonialism and imperialism in places like the Belgian Congo and China. American Robert Edwin Peary presented a slide lecture on his attempt to make it to the North Pole. Part of that slide lecture included Peary's brief discussion of the “Esquimaux” (the Inuit).
Documentary films have a long history as well. Some of the earliest motion pictures recorded boxing matches, trains arriving at train stations, city scenes, and staged events (see suggested early documentary viewings below). They were "documentaries", in other words. There have been and continue to be several “genres” of documentary film—-newsreels, adventure/expedition films, historical documentaries, political documentaries, and the genre I am going to focus on in this lecture, ethnographic film. Ethnographic cinema, the subject of this talk, was and is intimately connected with the discipline of Anthropology in general and Cultural Anthropology and Social Anthropology in particular.
Curtis and Flaherty
In the earliest days of cinema there was some interest in what we today call ethnography. The Lumiere Brothers sent cameramen to Asia and Africa to film the “natives”. James White of Edison travelled to the US West, Hawaii, Mexico, and Egypt to film the “natives”. The earliest example of ethnographic film, if we accept the notion that anthropology is distinguished from sociology by the former's study of the “primitive” and the latter's study of the industrial world, however, is probably Edward Curtis's In the Land of the Headhunters (1914).
Curtis was an amateur ethnographer and, as a result, the bête noire of “professional anthropologist” Franz Boas. Curtis's In the Land of the Headhunters (aka, In the Land of the War Canoes), a film on the Kwakiutl Indians of North America's West Coast, is a romanticised, sensationalised, and melodramatic of Kwakiutl culture. It is also an example of what has come to be called “salvage anthropology” since the Kwakiutl culture Curtis filmed had already been impacted and changed by Western contact long before Curtis and his camera arrived in British Columbia. In order to film “traditional” elements of Kwakiutl society Curtis had to reconstruct the pre-European elements of Kwakiutl “culture” to Boas's great consternation. The moral of this story? Ethnographic cinema, just like Anthropology, began as an “amateur” “salvage” operation undertaken by gentleman scholars.
Though Curtis's reconstruction of Kwakiutl life before the Europeans may have been among the first ethnographic films, Robert Flaherty (1884-1951) was probably the first of ethnographic cinemas auteurist stars. Flaherty born in Detroit, Michigan, made a number of highly praised and important ethnographic films over the course of his professional life including Nanook of the North, Moana, Man of Aran, Louisiana Story, and, with the famous German film auteur F.W. Murnau (1888-1931), Tabu: A Tale of the South Seas.
Nanook of the North (1922) is a documentary film about an Inuit family living in the Arctic Circle. Filmed near Hudson Bay in Quebec, Canada Nanook was the first large scale documentary ever made clocking in at around 79 minutes. Nanook, as was the case with many other early ethnographic films, was funded by a private corporation, in Nanook’s case the French fur company Revillion Freres.
Like Curtis Flaherty engaged in “salvage” ethnography. By the time Flaherty arrived in the north the Inuit had already been westernised so Flaherty had to reconstruct “traditional” elements of Inuit society and culture for the camera eye. Additionally, like Curtis’s In the Land of the Headhunters, Flaherty’s Nanook of the North had a narrative, a story, around which the documentary revolved, specifically one of Flaherty's favourite themes, humans against nature.
Flaherty’s later documentaries Moana (1926), Man of Aran (1934), Louisiana Story (1948), and Tabu: A Tale of the South Seas (1931) followed a pattern similar to Nanook. Moana was filmed in Safune on the island of Savai'i in Samoa. Man of Aran was filmed on the Aran Islands off the coast of Ireland. Since both “cultures” had been impacted by westerners” the “traditional” culture of both had to be reconstructed before they could be filmed. Both were suffused with the humans against nature theme that seems to be central to Flaherty's aesthetic. Louisiana Story (1948), funded by the American corporate giant Standard Oil, focused on a young boy, his pet raccoon, the bayou around him, and the decision of the boy's father to allow to an oil rig to be built on his land. Not surprisingly, given who funded the film, Louisiana Story emphasised how the oil rigs were “harmony” with the environment. Tabu (1931), was filmed on Bora Bora in the South Pacific. The film focuses on the romance between two young lovers who decide to escape from their village when the young female lover is chosen as the new maid of the gods making her tabu to her young male lover. Moving into new territory, at least for Flaherty—is this the influence of Murnau?--Tabu is more humans against humans than humans against nature.
Flaherty, of course, important though he was and is, wasn't the only prominent ethnographic filmmaker in the early years of anthropological cinema. There was also Ernest Schoedsack and Merrian C. Cooper who made the Paramount funded Grass (1925), which focused on the Bakhtiani tribe as they made their annual struggle across the rugged mountains of Persia (Iran), and Chang (1928), which centred on the survival strategies of a peasant family in the jungles of Siam (Thailand). The fictional elements in both documentaries laid the foundation for Shoedsack's and Cooper's first great fiction film, King Kong (1933). There were the world travellers Osa and Martin Johnson whose sound film Congorilla: Adventures Among the Big Apes and Little People of Central Africa (1932) had a few scenes of pygmies filmed in the Belgian Congo (Democratic Republic of the Congo). There were Leon Poirier and Andre Sauvauge whose La croissiere jeune, funded by the French automobile giant Citroen, followed, not surprisingly, a Citroen automobile as it made its way from Beirut to Beijing and took in some ethnographic colour along the way. There were Knud Rasmussen and Frederich Dalseim whose tale of Inuit love Palos bruderfaerd (1934), was shot in Greenland, a Danish colonial possession.
From "Fact" to Parody and Satire
Though the work of Flaherty in particular was praised by many not everyone shared in the praise for ethnographic documentaries Noted Marxist and surrealist auteur Luis Bunuel, for instance, satirised and parodied the adventurer/ethnographer subgenre and its ethnocentrisms and stereotypes and caricatures to great intellectual and humourous effect in his documentary anti-documentary Las Hurdes: Tierra sin pain (1935). In Las Hurdes Bunuel tries to force the viewer to confront the ethnocentric arrogance and single voice paternalism he saw as inherent in the cinematic form (the debate over these issues, by the way, would enervate much reflexive anthropological theoretical discussion in the 1980s and 1990s).
Beyond the “Primitive”
If we broaden our idea of what constitutes ethnographic film a number of other documentary films of the 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s become relevant to the history of ethnographic cinema. The 1920s saw a number of “city symphonies” appear including Charles Sheeler's and Paul Strand's jazz inflected Manhatta (1921), Alberto Cavalcanti's Rien que les heures (1926), Walter Ruttman's (1887-1941) Berlin: Die Sinfonie der Großstadt/Berlin, Symphony of a Great City (1927), and Dziga Vertov's (1896-1954) Chelovek s Kinoapparatum/Man with a Movie Camera (1929). Each of these films gave cinema goers a look, a generally celebratory look (modernity as utopia), a sometimes critical look (modernity as anomic and alienating), into life in the metropolis's of Manhattan, Paris, Berlin, Kiev, Odessa, and Moscow respectively.
Other films offered a celebratory peek at specific aspects of city life. Joris Ivens's Die brug (1928), for instance, focused on a Rotterdam bridge as it opened and closed to let ship traffic pass though it as well as the trains that crossed it and the characters who passed over and around it. It wasn't only cities or engineering feats that came in for celebration in early documentary cinema. Soviet documentarists like Viktor Turin (1929's Turksib), Mikhail Kalatozov (1930's Sol Svaneti), and Dziga Vertov (1931's Donbass Symphony and 1934's Three Songs of Lenin) celebrate the engineering triumphs of the new Soviet state. Leni Riefenstahl's (1902-2003) staged Triumph des Willens/Triumph of the Will (1935) and Olympia (1938) celebrate Hitler, Nazism, the modern Olympics, and (presumed) Aryan superiority. Producer, director, writer and critic John Grierson (1898-1972)--it was Grierson writing as “The Moviegoer” in The New York Sun (8 February 1926) who first used the term “documentary” in a review of Flaherty's Moana--made the film Drifters (1929) which celebrated Britain's commercial fishers. Grierson later helped found the important National Film Commission (1936), later the National Film Board/Office national du film du Canada (NFB/ONB), helped draft the National Film Act (Canada) (1939), was appointed Government Film Commissioner (Canada) (1939), and led the NFB/ONF during the years in which it produced “propaganda” films celebrating Canadian life. World War Two, of course, saw virtually every nation involved in the war produce documentary propaganda in support of the “war effort”.
Not everyone came to praise documentaries in service to the nation-state. Luis Bunuel (1900-1983), and Jean Vigo (1905-1934) and Vertov's brother Boris Kaufman (1897-1980) poked fun at all of this celebratory documentary film making. Bunuel's critical surrealist films Un chien andalou/An Andalusian Dog (1929) L'age d'or/Age of Gold (1930), which he made with Salvador Dali, took a poke at modern love, the church, the state, the modern city, and the modern bourgeoisie. Vigo's and Kaufman's A Propos de Nice satirises a French society Vigo and Kaufman saw as superficial and in a state of putrification
Criticism of the state did not always come from cinematic “outsiders” like Bunuel and Vigo. Sometimes government-funded films bit the hand that fed. The US government funded (funded by the Resettlement Administration) The Plow that Broke the Plains (1936) and The River (1938) directed by Pare Lorentz had an air of melancholy to them, it was the era of depression and dust bowl after all, as the transformations of the Great Plains and Mississippi Valley the two films trace also left environmental problems in their wake.
Though the study of documentary and ethnographic film focuses almost exclusively on non-fiction films it is worth remembering that in the wake of World War II documentary film making also influenced fiction cinema. Post World War Two Italian Neorealism, for instance, specifically films by auteurs Roberto Rosselini (1906-1977)—Roma città aperta/Rome, Open City (1945)—and Vittorio de Sica (1902-1974)—Sciuscià/Shoeshine (1946) and Ladri di biciclette/Bicycle Thief (1948)—all bear the marks of documentary newsreel techniques and have an ethnographic feel to them.
The best-known and arguably the most influential documentary and ethnographic filmmaker in the post World War II period was Jean Rouch. Rouch was a “professional ethnologist”. Born in Paris in 1917 Rouch initially trained as a civil engineer. While riding out World War Two in West Africa, however, he developed an interest in anthropology. After World War Two Rouch returned to Paris where he entered the Musee de l'homme to study social anthropology and ethnography with noted ethnologists Marcel Mauss and Marcel Griaule. Griaule, who at the time was beginning to utilise film in his fieldwork in Africa, stimulated a similar interest in Rouch.
Ethnology was not the only influence on Rouch. During the course of his professional life Rouch praised documentarist Dziga Vertov as a director of “films that beget films” and once referred to documentarist Robert Flaherty as “one of the greatest” metteurs-en-scene (metteur-en-scene was a term coined by the influential critic Andre Bazin, founder of the influential film journal Cahiers du cinéma, to refer to the mise-en-scene of specific directors; Rouch's use of this term shows the extent of his relationship to the critical revolution in film analysis going on in Paris in the 1950s mostly in the pages of Cahiers and the other significant French film journal and competitor to Cahiers, Positif). The influence of both Vertov and Flaherty is evident in Rouch's own work.
Dziga Vertov once claimed that cinéma-vérité at its best catches life unawares. This seems as apt a description of the many of “documentaries” of French auteur Jean Rouch as any as historian Jean-Andre Fieschi points out. Rouch's early ethnological shorts (Brian Winston refers to this Rouch as Rouch 1) made between the late 1940s and early 1950s were largely filmic representations of West African cultural practises. Rouch's camera was a discreet presence. Commentaries were added to aid Western audiences in understanding the cultural practises they were seeing on screen. A brief resume of the subjects of Rouch's films—funeral rites (Cimetiere dans la falaise (1951)), hunting (La Chase au lion a l'arc (1965)), fishing (Bataille sur le grand fleuve (1951)), spiritual practises, possession rituals (Les Maitres fous (1955), Cantate pour deux generaux (1990)), rain-making rituals (Yenendi de Yantalla (1970)), celebrations (Baby Ghana (1957)), cultural issues like war and slavery (Babatou ou les trois conseils (1976)), marriage (Boulevards d'Afrique (1988)), gender, race religion, and upbringing (Folie ordinaire d'une fille de Cham (1986)), and the daily lives of migrant workers (Moi, un Noir (1959))--would seem to be the standard subjects of documentary film making. Five early shorts (La circoncision (1948-1949), Bataille sur le grand fleuve (1950-1951), Cimetiere dans la falaise (1950-1951), Les hommes qui font la pluie (1950-1951), and Les gens du mill (1950-1951)) brought together under the title Les fils de l'eau (1952/1955, first shown 1958), for example, focus on various aspects in the lives of a tribe in Niger—their prayers for rain, the coming of rain, their sowing and harvesting of millet, their burial rites, their circumcisions, their hippopotamus hunt—with its commentary derived from the local dialect, local tribal chants, and local tribal music—and would thus seem to confirm this first impression.
This first impression, however, would be a mistaken first impression. Rouch's experiments in cinema and his move away from “realist” practise actually began very early. Les hommes qui font la pluie (1951) focuses on magical rites which attempt to restore fertility to a drought ridden French colony Niger. The film ends with what is perhaps meant to be a miracle as rain falls bringing much needed water to the parched earth. The “miracle” isn't the only cinematic manipulation in the film. Rouch paints the film in washed out and uneven colours. Jaguar (1954-1967, first shown 1971) focuses on a hazardous quest and a succession of ordeals. Its narrative is meandering. Its form is the serial. Les Maitres fous (1955) explores annual ceremony of the hanka, the demons of power, in Ghana. People from everyday life populate the film—urban labourers, waiters, workers. Its focus is a stage by stage portrayal of the hanka. As the film proceeds those carrying out the ritual become possessed, their bodies contort, they foam at the mouth, they mix the blood of slaughtered dogs with the yolks of eggs and get drunk from the mixture. They even adopt the personas of their colonial masters. In the film Rouch explores the cathartic aspects of this ritual. In Les Maitres fous Rouch manipulates colour. “Everyday reality” is depicted in images of red and green. He manipulates images: he depicts red and green images of horse guards against a lush prairie background as a counterpoint to the hanka. The point of this seems to be to make connections between the rituals of the “savage” and the “civilised”, between imperialised and imperialiser, critiquing the distinctions in the process (cf. the montage theory of Eisenstein). Moi, un noir (1959), which for Jean-Andre Fieschi is a turning point in Rouch's work, portrays a group an individuals from Treichville in Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire revealing their fantasies through their adoption of movie star pseudonyms (Eddie Constantine, Edward G. Robinson, Tarzan, Dorothy Lamour). In this film the viewer is pushed to ask who is speaking in the film, whether these speeches are monologues or not, and even whether the characters in the documentaries are “real” or not.
Starting with Moi, un Noir Rouch's more reflexive “documentaries” give us a cinema of behaviours, dreams, subjectivities, daydreams, desires, improvisations, complicities, and collective creations. In Moi, un Noir Rouch's camera becomes a provocateur which stimulates or precipitates situations, conflicts, expeditions that would otherwise not take place. (take that cinema verite). No longer does Rouch pretend the camera isn't there. Rather he foregrounds its presence. Filming becomes a means of creation. With Moi, un Noir Rouch's cinema becomes a cinema of collective creation and reflexivity. In Moi participants reveal what they chose to while the camera is running. After seeing themselves on screen they then comment on what is on screen reshaping what is going on on screen in the process. The intimate Chronique d'un été (1961), probably Rouch's best known work internationally, filmed by Rouch, Michel Brault, and sociologist Edgar Morin with light weight sound equipment and wide angle cameras developed by Brault, finds the trio reveling in reflexivity and spontaneity as they move through Paris, Rouch once said he wanted to explore “[t]he strange tribes that live in Paris”), and the south of France in the midst of the colonial and imperial crisis in Algeria, asking passers-by if they “are happy”. As he had done with Moi Rouch and Morin showed the finished film to those they questioned, asked them to comment on their responses, filmed these responses, introduced participants to each other, and edited all of these into the finished film. Rouch, Brault, and Morin called what they did cinéma-vérité in homage to Vertov's kino-pravda (camera truth or, more poetically, the camera eye).
Rouch was not solely a “documentarist”. He also contributed Gare du Nord (1965) to the collaborative fiction film Paris vu par, (Winston's Rouch 3). Filmed like his “ethnographic films”, edited to make it appear as though it was shot in one long take, it actually took two, Gard, with its documentary like sounds and images, mimics real time (a la Alfred Hitchcock's Rope). Rouch's hugging camera focuses on a young married couple as they argue in their flat, follows the wife as she leaves the flat, almost gets hit by a car, is apologised to by the driver of that car, walks with that driver across a bridge over a railway, is told by the driver that he will kill himself if she doesn't come with him, and ends with her refusal to go with him and the drivers death. Is anyone happy in this film?
For R.F. Cousins, Jean Rouch was a pioneer of cinéma vérité and a pioneer of improvised film psychodramas. For Jean-Andre Fieschi, Rouch's work, like Vertov's before him, was a cinema of repudiations—a repudiation of Hollywood cinema, a repudiation of Hollywood actors, a repudiation of Hollywood style acting, a repudiation of Hollywood décor, a repudiation of Hollywood classical montage, and a repudiation of the cinéma vérité of Richard Leacock and Company. For Fieschi Rouch is the great vérité illusionist. He is narrator, storyteller, outsider, and bricoleur mixing events, reports, fictions, diverse locations, into an almost surreal final product. His is a work, says Fieschi, of spontaneity, juxtapositions, contradictions, discomfort, novelty, whimsy, automism, inspiration, and science/fiction.
But let's let Rouch speak for himself:
Rouch: “When I'm making a film, it takes a few minutes getting started, then I see the film taking shape in the viewfinder of my camera, and I know that at any given moment whether what I'm getting is good or not. The constant tension is exhausting, but it's an excitement absolutely essential if one is to bring off this aleatory pursuit of the most effective images and sounds, without ever being certain until you're shooting the final sequences what the result will be...Oh, the number of unfinished films I've made because nothing happened—a ritual possession dance in which nobody got possessed; because it grew dark; because I ran out of film...”
“What are these films, what outlandish name distinguishes them from the rest? Do they exist? I have no idea yet, but I do know that there are certain very rare occasions when, without the aid of a single subtitle, the spectator suddenly understands an unknown tongue, takes part in strange ceremonies, wanders in towns or though landscapes he has never seen but which he recognises perfectly...Only the cinema can perform this miracle, though no particular aesthetic can reveal the mechanism, and no special technique can set it in motion: neither clever counterpointing in the cutting, nor the use of some stereophonic Cinerama process can create such wonders...It is as if there were no more cameras, no more sound recorders, no more photo-electric cells, none of the welter of accessories and technicians which comprise the great ritual of classic cinema. But the film-makers of today prefer not to venture into those dangerous paths; and only fools and madmen and children dare to push the forbidden buttons.” (Positiff, November 1955)
Over the years Rouch has received extensive praise for his film, particularly his early films. Not everyone, however, has come to praise Rouch. The reasons for the discomfort of some for Rouch's films foreground what would, by the late 1960s, become a major theme in reflective social and cultural anthropology—the embededness of ethnologists and ethnographers within forms of discursive power in general (cf. the social constructionists and Foucault) and their relationship to Western colonial power in particular. As Erik Barnouw points out many Africans and a few Western critics thought his early films like Les Maitres fous reinforced Western perceptions and images of Africans as savages. Rouch responded to this, as I noted earlier, by incorporating the voices of “subjects” into Jaguar and Moi, un noir. Others, like Roy Armes, have criticised some of Rouch's later work for its inadequate preparation, banality of dialogue, and problematic editing.
Jean Rouch died in February of 2004. During the course of his career he co-founded the International Ethnographic and Sociological Film Committee at the Musee de l'homme (1952) with Andre-Leon Gourhan and he collaborated with prominent ethnographers like Roger Rosenfelder, Germaine Dieterlen, and Quebec's Michel Brault and Claude Jutra.
Jean Rouch's reflexive ethnographic films did not spell the end of non-reflexive ethnographic cinema. 1952 saw Margaret Mead's and Gregory Bateson's Childhood Rivalry in Bali and New Guinea appear. 1956 saw the appearance of John Marshall's Peabody Museum (Harvard) funded study of a Kalahari Bushman giraffe hunt The Hunters. The 1960s saw the rise to prominence of the cinéma vérité of the Drew Associates (Robert Drew, Richard Leacock, D.A. Pennebaker, Albert Maysles, David Maysles, Hope Ryder, Joyce Chopra, and James Lipscomb) who collectively, with funding from Time-Life, and, after the demise of Drew Associates, individually explored American politics (the Wisconsin primary battle between JFK and Hubert Humphrey, Primary, 1960, Drew Associates), American musical celebrities (Bob Dylan, Don't Look Back, Pennbaker, 1966), American economics and the farm crisis, (For Auction: An American Hero, 1986, Leacock), and even, somewhat atypically for the American practitioners of vérité, a more middle class American icon (the trials and travails of a Bible salesman, Salesman, the Maysles, 1969). In Great Britain Michael Apted gave us the “realist” (if increasingly somewhat self-conscious) documentary bildungsroman the Up Series (7 Up, 7 Plus 7, 21 Up, 28 Up, 35 Up, 42 Up, 49 Up, and 56 Up). 1963 saw the appearance of Robert Gardner's exploration of Dani (New Guinea) ritualistic warfare and revenge Dead Birds, a film that proved controversial when it was learned that the voice of the Dani protagonist of the film Weyak was dubbed by American anthropologist Karl Heider. Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose. 1975 saw the appearance of Napoleon Chagnon's, Tim Asch's, and Patsy Asch's study of the Yanomamo The Axe Fight. One critic would later suggest that the fact that Chagnon distributed machetes only to some of the Yanomamo in the village gave rise to the behaviours recorded in the film. Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose. Chagnon and the Asch would go on to make 22 subsequent documentaries on the Yanomamo almost all of them would bring controversy in their wake.
Nor did reflexive film, documentary or fiction, die with Jean Rouch. Mary and Maxine Tsosie (with anthropologists Sol Worth and Jon Adair) brought us Spirit of the Navajos (1966) a film which tried to speak for the Navajo. Kidlat Tahimik gave us I am Furious Yellow (1981-1993) which traced the development of each of Tahimik's three sons. Frances Peters brought us Tent City (1992) which explored Aboriginal land rights issues from the Aboriginal “point of view”. Michael Moore gave us Roger & Me (1989) which followed Moore's increasingly self-conscious attempts to interview GM president Roger Smith. Louis Theroux has done a number of entertaining, enlightening, mystifying, misleading, controversial, somewhat autobiographical, and moralistic documentaries for the BBC for his Weird Weekends series and beyond over the years. All of these foregrounded reflexivity or the participatory (in trendy terms, dialogic) nature of documentary filmmaking.
Beyond ostensibly non-fiction films the influence of documentary filmmaking can be seen almost everywhere in the cinematic universe. The influence of Jean Rouch's reflexive cinema can readily be seen in the work of filmmakers like Jean Luc Godard, Jacques Rivette, Chris Marker, and Jean Marie Straub. The influence of more “realist” and “reflexive” documentary film techniques can be seen in TV shows like Joss Whedon's Buffy the Vampire Slayer, in particular in the famous episode “The Body” (5:16, 27 February 2001, UPN, written and directed by Buffy creator Joss Whedon), Whedon’s Firefly, Ricky Gervais’s The Office, the brilliant The Thick of It (which is grounded in improvisation), the brilliant Outnumbered (which also uses improvisation), many of the films of Eric Rohmer which are, at least in part, documents dissecting contemporary bourgeois lives, and the films of Robert Bresson and the Dardennes Brothers, which are, at least in part, documents exploring the lives of that rarest of fiction film species, particularly in Hollywood, the poor.
Roy Armes, French Cinema Since 1946, Volume Two: The Personal Style (London: Tantivy Press, second edition, 1970), pp. 159-166)
R.F. Cousins, "Rouch, Jean" in Andrew Sarris (ed.), The St. James Film Directors Encyclopedia (Detroit: Visible Ink, 1998), pp. 434-438
Jean-André Fieschi, "Jean Rouch" in Richard Roud (ed.), Cinema A Critical Dictionary: The Major Film-Makers (New York: Viking, 1980), pp. 901-909
Suggested Early Documentary Video Viewings
Thomas Edison, William KL Dickson, 1894
Thomas Edison, 1894
Max Skladonowsky, 1895
Die Boxende Kanguruh
Max Skladonowsky, 1895
L'Arrivée d'un Train a la Ciotat/Arrival of a Train at La Ciotat
Lumiere Brothers, Louis and Auguste, 1895
Broadway at Union Square, New York City
Louis Lumiere, 1896
Miners Leaving Pendlebury Colliery
Mitchell and Kenyon, 1901
Nude Woman by Waterfall (manipulated erotic documentary)
Claude Friese-Greene, 1920