Thursday, May 14, 2009

Silent Film

href="">Spray, Sweden

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href="">Swedish Film Institute src="swedishfilminst.gif" vspace=2>
Swedish Silent Film

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title="Swedish Silent Film"
Swedish Silent Film src="swedishsilentfilm.jpg">

title="Silent Film"
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Swedish Silent Film

href="scottlordgretagarbo.html">Greta Garbo and Victor Sjostrom

If early silent cinema was a cinema of attractions,the
filmic object photographed by a stationary camera to illustrate its
movement, the spectator then identifying with the position of the camera,
Swedish films,idyllic in their complementing the tone of Pippa
(1909), Lines of White on a Sullen Sea (1909) and the silent film
Enoch Arden (1911),brought elements of the saga into the narrative
mode of discourse,the hieroglyphic it contributed to the cinema almost
runic. Scenes that were no longer composed of a single shot and that would
no longer rely upon tableau had a pictorial value that would become
evocative in their depiction of mood and setting, narrative space
articulated by camera position and fluidity. Filmic address could more
often be comprised of objects put into the scene, placing the view of the
spectator within it, not only to bring a greater involvement with
character, but to allow the spectator to identify more often with the
relation between character and enviornment, technique providing the
relation between film and viewer. Specific to the relationship between
character and enviornment is the relation between the character and the
object towards which he or she is looking. The aesthetics of pictorial
composition could utilize placing the figure in either the foreground or
background of the shot, depth of plane,depth of framing, narrative and
pictorial continuity being developed together. Compositions would become
related to each other in the editing of successive images and adjacent
shots, the structure of the scene; Griffith had already begun to cut
mid-scene, his cutting to another scene before the action of the previous
scene was completed, and had certainly already begun to cut between two
seperate spatial locations within the scene.

Swedish Silent Film

Author Kenneth Macgowan praises the silent film The Avenging Conscience as a photoplay, his view being that Giriffith's film uses a narrative method of storystructure, action being secondary to character development, if not often interpolated in between scenes, his noting that it was seldom that Griffith used intertitles with lines of dialougue during a scene. Among the narrative films of Griffith filmed in 1909 was the silent film The Sealed Room.

The camera could also portray the character more fully by adding the movement
of the camera to character movement, as in The Golden Louis (1909),
mobilizing the gaze of the character within the organization of the look.
In For Love of Gold, one of the fourty four href="" title="silent film">biograph films made in
1908, href="">D.W. Griffith and Bitzer had
shifted the placement of the camera during the scene, the close up used in
conjuction with the long shot and full shot. Not only could the editing
together of different spatial relationships with each shot provide
contrast between shots that were in a series, but the duration of each
shot could be varying as well. With the use of varying camera postitions,
particularly during the 1908 film After Many Years, Griffith would
establish the use of the "narrative close up" (Cook), and by the
interpolating of an individual shot between shots similar in composition
as a cut in shot, editing would be used to connect seperate shots to
advance plotline. With Griffith, film would create a proscenium arc of its
own, that of the lens, a lens that would with the Vitagraph nine foot line
bring the frame into the grammar of film, shifting from a viewpoint of
playing in front of the audience to one more aligned with it, the
authorial camera entering into a new relationship with the spectator-
included in the films made by D. W Griffith in 1908 is a stage to screen
adaptation of The Taming of the Shrew, with Florence Lawrence.

Among the literary adaptations filmed by Vitagraph in 1909 was Launcelot and Elaine.

her autobiography, Lillian Gish discusses Griffith's use of shot legnth in
The Lonely Villa (1909) and his cutting between camera distances in
The Lonedale Operator (1911). Not incidentally, Eisenstien in a
discussion of Griffith's editing goes so far as to describe "the principle
function of the close shot" which is "not so much to present, as to
signify, to designate, to give meaning." Belazs adds, "Only in editing is
the shot given its particular meaning." Cavell writes, "If either the
frame or subject budges, the composition alters." If filmic address during
a cinema of attractions had begun with the act of display, it had begun to
incorporate the actor as seen in close shot, which could be edited into a
grammar of film - the shot had become "the unit of editing" and the "basis
for the construction of the scene" (Jacobs), whereas before it had been
the scene that would allow the placement of shots, it now being that there
could be an assemblage of shots. Terry Ramsaye writes," Griffith began to work at a syntax for the screen narration...While Griffith may not have originated the closeup and like elements of technique, he did establish for them their function."; which silent film author Nicholas A. Vardac reiterates by writing that it was from the films of Edwin S. Porter that D.W. Griffith acquired the technique of viewing the shot within its context as "a syntax for the melodrama". Two films directed by Eisenstien have been offered online through streaming video, the silent film The Battleship Potemkin (1925) and the silent film October (1927).

Belazs mentions that the mood of a scene can be established by the
particular set ups that are used, his almost attributing the ability to
participate in the action to the surroundings and background in which the
film takes place, as does Spottiswoode, who mentions that by filming from any number of postitions and angles, the director can decide which elements of the scene can be included in creating its mood, particularly which components of the director's subject. Bengt Forslund notes that the use of nature to provide
the action of the scene with something that would render it more dramatic
Gardner, particularly diring "the lyrical love sequences between Lili
Beck and Gösta Ekman, his having written, "There is also an intentionally
stereoscopic effect in the sets that is typical of all of Sjöström's
films, and that shows the amount of intuition Sjöström had for the new
medium." Often in the films of Sjöström, like in those of Bergman, the
landscape "in which his journeys take place are part of the journey."
(John Simon). href="" title="Swedish Film">Peter
has noted that Swedish films were
often shot on location and that Sjöström had "revelled in location
shooting and embarked on the most perilous of stunts for the sake of
realism." Birgitta Steene writes that "it was Sjöström and Stiller (as
well as Griffith) who began to shoot pictures out-doors". David A. Cook
writes, "Nevertheless in his best dramas of pastoral life, Sjöström to integrate the rugged Swedish landscape into the texture of his
films with an almost mystical force- a feature noted and much admired in
other countries." Venerated Swedish film historian Forsyth Hardy compares the directors Victor Sjöström to each other by writing, "Both turned instinctively for material to the works of Selma Lagerloff with their combination of ardent puritanism and a passionate love of nature. And both were sensitively aware of the virtue which the camera could draw out of inanimate objects." Sjöström and Stiller can be compared while relating their influence upon the silent film of Finland, but it can be allowed that "Victor Sjöström delved deeper into the mysteries of the landscape." (Annitti Alanen) Of interest is that the establishing shot that begins the Greta Garbo film Love, directed in the Untied States by Edmund Goulding is an exterior that begins the plotline with Garbo in a snowstorm being brought homeward in a sleigh; it is a series of exterior shots that depict nature as the background for character delineation very much like in the films of Scandinavian director Victor Sjöström, so much so that it is revealed in the first interior shots that both the love interest in the film, portrayed by John Gilbert, and the audience, were nearly unaware of who the character portayed by Garbo really was and hadn't fully realized it untill being given later look at the beauty of the passenger, as though they were being reintroduced to someone they had been with during the journey through the snow.

And yet, if the present author has anything to add to what has been written in appreciation of Scandinavian film and its use of landscape to add depth to the development of character by creating relationships between the background and the protagonist of any given film's plotline, within that is that within classical cinema and its chronological ordering of events, it is still often spatio-temporal relationships that are developed. The viewer often acknowledging the effect that an object within the film might have upon the character, an object that is either stationary or in movement, poeticly in movement as a waterfall would be, the structuring of space within the film not only clarifies plot action, but, within the framed image, included in the spatial continuity within the visual structure of the film, establishes a relation of objects that appear onscreen to the space that is offscreen. Spatial relations became narrative. Character movement, camera movement and shot structure create a scenographic space which within the gaze of the actress is observed through an ideal of femininity, a unity of space constructed that links shots, often by forming spaces that are contiguous within the scene and creating images that are poeticly presented as being contiguous; subjectivity is structured within the discourse of the film and these subjectivities are presented to the viewer as being within a larger context within early Silent Scandinavian films.

In addition to using close ups that could isolate the actor from what particular background that happenned to surround him or her, D. W. Griffith would establish the relationship between character and
enviornment as well, particularly developing it through the use of editing
and varying spatial relationships, as in his use of exteriors and the long shot in the silent film Battle
at Elderbrush (1912).

In title="Svenska Biografteatern-Kristianstad"
the director Carl Engdahl pioneered with the film The People
of Varmland
(Varmanningarna) in 1909, photographed by Robert
(Ohlsson) Olsson, it having been only the first adaptation of Fredrick August Dahlgren's play. The film was produced by AB Svenska Biografteatern. That year Carl Engdahl and Robert Olsson also collaborated on the films
The Wedding at Ulfasa (Brollopet Pa Ulfasa, 1909) and
Tales of Ensign Stal (Franrik Stals Sagner, 1909). Carl Engdahl appears as an actor in all three films,
as does actress Frida Greif. The Swedish actressess Kathie Jacobsson, Ellen Hallberg and Ellen Stroback all appear in both films Varmanningarna and Tales of Ensign Stal. Robert Olsson photographed The Wedding at Ulfasa for two directors, the second having had been being Gustaf Linden. The film starred the Swedish silent film actresses Ellen Appelberg, Lilly Wasmuth and Anna Lisa Hellstrom. In 1910, Olsson wrote, directed and photographed the film
Emigranten, starring Oscar Soderholm and Valborg Ljungberg, and
photographed the films Emigrant starring Torre Cederborg and Gucken
Cederborg in her first appearance on screen, and Regina von Emmeritz och Kongung Gustaf II Adolf,
starring Emile Stiebel and Gerda Andre, both directed by Gustaf Linden. Twelve years later, Gucken Cederborg was introduced to another actress who would soon be introduced to Swedish audiences, Barry Paris having written that when when she and actress Tyra Ryman walked into Pub with actor-director Eric Petschler, Greta Garbo, who worked there as a clerk, recognized them immediately.

Film historians have noted that Kristianstad, Sweden was home to another film, The Man Who Takes Care of the Villian (Han som clara boven), filmed in 1907. Produced by Franz G. Wiberg, the film has never been released theatrically.

Svensk Kinematograf was the production company that under N. E. Sterner had filmed six of the earliest films photographed in Scandinavia- Robert Olsson had photographed Pictures of Laplanders (Lappbilder), Herring Fishing in Bohuslan (Sillfiske i Bohuslan), Lika mot lika starring Tollie Zellman and
Kung Oscars mottagning i Kristianstad in 1906 before working with Carl Engdahl. Also shown in Stockholm and Goteborg during 1906 was the film Kriget i Ostergotland. In 1911, Gustaf Linden,
directed the film The Iron Carrier (Jarnbararen), photographed by Robert Olsson and starring
Anna-lisa Hellstrom and Ivan Hedqvist. Similar to the early cinematography of Robert Olsson were the films shot by Ernest Florman, who wrote and directed the film Skona Helena (1903), which had starred Swedish actress Anna Norrie.

Another of Sweden's earliest photographers was Walfrid Bergström, who was behind the camera between 1907-1911 in Stockholm for Apollo productions. In 1907 Bergström filmed Den glada ankan, one of the three films produced by Albin Roosval starring Carl Barklind and Emma Meissner and Konung Oscar II's likbegangelse. Between 1907 and 1911, Bergstrrom would photographed Skilda tiders danser with Emma Meissner and Rosa Grunberg in 1909 and Ryska sallskapsdanser in 1911. During 1908, Svenska Biografteatern produced two short films with the actress Inga Berentz, Sjomansdansen, photographed by Walfrid Bergstrom, and I kladloge och pascen, photographed by Otto Bokman.

Charles Magnusson, who came to the
United States, directed and wrote The Pirate and Memories from
the Boston Sports Club
in 1909 and Orpheus in the Underworld (Urfeus i underjorden) in
1910. Magnusson in 1909 had become the managing director of Svenska
Biografteatern, which Julius Jaenzon become part of in 1910. Notably, while under N. E. Sterner of Svensk Kinematograf, Charles
Magnusson had photographed Konung Haakons mottagning i Kristiania
(1905), a short film of the King of Norway's visit to Kristiania almost as though to presage that it would be there, rather than Rasunda that he would begin the Swedish Film industry, his also having directed the films Gosta Berlings land(Bilder fran Frysdalen, 1907),
Gota elf-katastrofen (1908) and Resa Stockholm-Goteborg genom
Gota och Trollhatte kanaler
(1908). Konstantin Axelsson, in 1911,
directed Hon fick platsen eller Exkong Manuel i Stockholm. Starring Ellen Landquist, the film was produced in Stockholm by Apollo and was photographed by Walfrid Bergstrom.

Like Charles Magnusson, Frans Lundberg produced short silent films in Sweden, the first two filmed in 1910. Stora Biografteatern, in Malmo, Sweden, photographed To Save a Son (Massosens offer), directed by Alfred Lind and starring Agnes Nyrup-Christensen, and The People of Varmland (Varmlandingarna), directed by Ebba Lindkvist, photographed by Ernst Dittmer and starring Agda Malmberg, Astrid Nilsson and Ester Selander. The following year Ernesr Dittmer would write and direct the film Rannsakningsdomaren, starring Gerda Malmberg and Ebba Bergman.

In Malmo Sweden, for Stora Biografteatern, Otto Hoy during 1911 wrote and directed the film The Spy (Spionen), starring Paul
Welander and Agnes Nyrop-Christensen, the manager of Stora Biografteatern, Frans Lundberg. Paul Welander wrote and directed his first film in 1911,

Carl Engdahl later appeared in the 1926 film
Mordbrannerskan, directed by John Lindlof.

href=""> src="strindberg.jpg" align=right>Forsyth Hardy notes that the early Swedish films of 1911 were films in which "the camera remained static and the action was artificially concentrated into a small area in front of it." Not quite apart from this and very
much like the silent film included in Vardac's account of the use of the
proscenium arch in early cinema in Stage to Screen,the films directed by
Anna Hofman Uddgren in 1911 were transpositions of Miss Julie and
The Father (Fadren) ,the intimate theater of title="Swedish Plays-Strindberg"
href="">Swedish playwright
Strindberg. Cameraman Otto Bokman used two exterior shots during
The Father, the film having starred Karin Alexandersson and Renee
Bjorling. Miss Julie, a film that had had its Stockholm premiere at the Orientaliska Teatern, starred Karin Alexandersson and Manda Bjorling. Both plays were later to be filmed by Alf Sjöberg. Stiller had,
in fact, been the manager of the Lilla Teaten and a contemporary of August
Falk and Manda Bjorling had acted with him and Anna Flygare at the Intima Theatern. Uddgren also in 1911 directed Single a Dream (Blott in
), starring Edith Wallen Sisters (Systarna), starring Edith Wallen and Sigurd Wallen and Stockholmsdamernas
, starring Carl Barcklind, Erika Tornberg and Anna-Lisa Hellström. Balif
vid Molle
(1911) was photographed by John Bergqvist. Also in Stockholm, the Kungliga Dramatiska Teatern, later managed by both Ingmar Bergman and Erland Josephson, was headed by Gustaf Fredriksson between 1904-1907 and then by Knut Michaelson between 1908-1910. Swedish Film Institue founder Charles Magnusson in 1911
directed The Talisman (Amuletten), starring Lili Bech. Victor Sjöström had had
his own theater with Einar Froberg before his directing under Magnusson,
it having been Froberg that had spoken to Magnusson before he and Sjöström
had met. Swedish film director Gustav Molander had in fact been at the
Intima Teatern from 1911 to 1913. The Blue Tower, where August Strindberg
lived in Stockholm between 1908-1912 and where he wrote the play The Great
Highway, is now part of The Strindberg Museum.

Thanhouser was also producing adaptations of literature for the screen and in 1911 filmed three plays by Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen: Pillars of Society (Samfundets stotter), Lady from the Sea (Fruen fra havet, Theodore Marston) and A Doll's House (Et dukkehjem). Lubin that year filmed a version of Ibsen's Sins of the Father (Gengangere).

Although a theory of a cinema of attractions depends less upon the use
of the proscenium arch written about by Nicholas A. Vardac or the camera's
photographic reproduction of drama that had previously been enacted upon
the stage and more upon the act of display having preceded the use of
cinematic and editorial devices to propel narrative, the grammar of film
would be used both to transpose the theatricality of the stage play and to
adapt novels to the screen in ways which they could not be performed in
front of a theater audience not only in regard to the modes of address
which would position the spectator but also in regard to the public sphere
of reception. Within the reception of each film there soon was a
heterogeneity of filmgoers and that films were visual soon transversed
language barriers between audiences that would otherwise have been
seperate. Characteristic of early films that were adaptions of novels was
the use of a linear narrative similar to that of the "well made novel"
novel of the nineteenth century, the camera following the character into
each subsequent scene. There soon would be films in which there would be a
contemporaneity of narrative and attraction. Raymond Spottiswoode
distinguishes between the photoplay, the adaptation of the stage play to
the screen with little or no editing, and the screenplay, where camera
movement and technique is used to convey narrative- the photoplay can be
likened to a cinema of attractions where the scene is filmed from a fixed
camera position, whereas the screenplay includes the cut from a medium
shot to a close shot in order to build the scene.

In regard to the camera being authorial, Raymond Spottiswoode writes,
"The spatial closeup is the usual means of revealing significant detail
and motion. Small movements which must necessarily have escaped the
audiences of a play sitting removed some distance from its actors can thus
be selected from their surroundings and magnified to any extent." While
writing that how the camera is authorial includes its having only one
position, that of the viewer, which, differing from that of the theater
audience can vary with each shot change, depending upon the action within
the scene, Spottiswoode cautions that the well written stage play is not
suited for the camera's mobility. He also indirectly addresses the use of
nature as a way to connect characters to their enviornment while they are
being developed that is quite often significant in Scandinavian films when
writing about the possibility there being a "difference film", by that his
referring to a film which uses relational cutting. "To constitute such a
'difference film' is not sufficiently merely to photograph mountains and
streams which are inaccessible to theater producers; the film must also
choose a method of carrying on its purposive themes or meaning from moment
to moment." He continues, "the public can be trained to appreciate that
the differences between nature seen and nature filmed constitute the chief
value of the cinema."

In the United States, with Edison (The Road of Anthracite,
Race for Millions and The Society Raffles) and Vitagraph
(Raffles, the Amatuer Cracksman, The Burgler on the Roof),
the attraction had literally become filmed theater, scenes based on those
of the stage solely for dramatic value, photographed in one reel as though
in one act, from which came the knee shot, or medium full shot; the use of
the proscenium arch is more pronounced before the Vitagraph nine foot
line, the camera distance of the knee shot, in that there would be space
left as visible in between the actor's feet and the bottom frameline,
space articulated in tableau that would be more like that of when the
spectator is in the audience at a theater. The legnth of one reel would be
between eight hundred and one thousand feet. At first the films of Melies
were shot in a single scene, as though filmed theater; in order to film
narrative he then put seperate shots in order to become connected scenes,
or "artificially arranged scenes". It would later become "a constant
shifting of scenes" (Lewis Jacobs). Although the article discusses the
lack of narrative closure and unicity of frame in early cinema, the
subject of a recent e-mailed book review was the writing of one author
that has offered the idea that there is less of a demarcation between
early cinema and the films that provide transition to the two-reel film
-writing about the editing of Melies, Ezra gives an account of his films
being comprised of combinations of photographic reproduction, spectacle
and narrative. Quite certainly, the images of film are moving images and
can advance the narrative and more of the film that was to come later
would be dramatic narrative. The cinema of Melies has been likened to a
cinema of attractions in its repetitive use of suprise and sudden
appearance; the temporality of attraction one of appearance-nonappearance
rather than that of development.

One particular silent film, Sherlock Holmes Baffled (1900), considerably
under one minute in legnth, had starred William Gillete, ushering in the
new century with the first screen appearance of the consulting detective.
On vieweing the single shot film, the audience is as baffled as Holmes by
the abrupt vanishings of a burgler that disappears and reappears
throughout the room through the use of stop-motion trick photography, the
film a superb example of early cinema and possibly any narrative of
attractions (action within the frame) there may have been.

The Great
Train Robbery, produced by Edwin S. Porter, was made by the Edison
Manufacturing Co. and is included in the 275 title="Silent Film"
href="">silent films
of the Paper Print
Collection. Also included in the collection
is the early title="Silent Film"
href="">silent film
The Little Train
filmed by the Edison Manufacturing Co. in 1905. The Library of
Congress also holds a collection of early animation, in which two films
produced by silent film pioneer Thomas A. Edison
are included, as well as Dinosaur and the missing link, produced by
Edison and written by Willis O'Brien in 1917. Charles Musser writes that more than four fifths of the films made by Edison between 1904 and 1907 were narrative or stage fiction; among these was the 1906 film Kathleen Mavourneen. The Edison company released its last film as a studio, The Unbeliever (Alan Crosland, six reels) in 1918. Not Incidentally, the term
'one sheet' used to describe the standard size of movie posters begin with
the Edison photoplay; it was a size of approximately 27 inches by 41
inches and often included a synopsis of the plotline of the film. The early silent films of Thomas Edison are also presently available from Kino.

William Rothman writes that only one sixth of the film before 1907 had
storyline. While Kenneth MacGowan also mentions filmmakers that had used
trick photography other than Melies, among them G. A Smith of England, he
adds that not untill Cecil Hepworth, with the silent film Alice in
, (1903) were there films that included seperate scenes to
articulate fantasy or narrative. A later screen version of the silent film Alice and Wonderland was filmed by W. W. Young in 1915. Edison had filmed a
version of Jack and the Beanstalk as early as 1902. title="Silent Film"
href="">Silent film director
Hepworth would shortly thereafter bring the element of editing
narrative into his films with Rescued by Rover. (1905)

Heath sees early cinema as space articulated in tableau, filmed
frontally, storyline achieved by the linking of scenes, as when they are
linked by characters and their having entered the frame, to the viewer,
spectacle being horizontal, scenographic space. Mary Ann Doanne equates
the cinema of attractions with "an early form of cinema organized around
single events" looking to the one-shot films as their often being "the
spectacular deployment of the female body", as in the Biograph film,
Pull Down the Curtains, Suzie (1904). The director at Biograph untill June 1908 had been Wallace McCutheon (Personal, 1904). The technique of crosscutting has been attributed to McCutheon (Her First Adventure, 1906; The Elopement, 1907); on occaision directors were beginning to hint at cutting on action by 1907 and were also beginning to link seperate scenes together, as when the same character
appears in two scenes that are adjacent. If, within a cinema of
attractions, narrative exposition had previously used a discontinuous
style, one of filming a single action within what was then an autonomous
shot, it would acquire as form a continuous style; when there were to be
juxtapositions within narrative from shot to shot, they would be decisions
of editing used for the advancement of plot. That intertitles were at
first often explanatory shows the beginnings of a narrative within cinema. During an early scene of the silent Frankenstien (J. Searle Dawley, Edison, 1910), there is, in between scenes, an expository intertitle that uses of a close shot of a letter to develop character within the narrative, epistolary form used on the screen. A similar insert shot is used in the film Dash Through the Clouds (1912).
Certainly by 1917 films made in the United States, and the films made by
Sjöström and Stiller in Sweden had acquired a narrative transitivity, a
chronological plot outline, more often than not their being characterized
by their having a causal motivation of scene and its structure. In regard to film preservation and the intertitle, The Danish Film Institute used the screenplay to Dreyer's film Der var Engang to provide descriptive intertitles to the film that explain its plot, including explanatory description that now appears in the same intertitle as the dialouge to the silent photoplay. Carl Dreyer had adapted the screenplay from the stage and seperated the two different types of intertitle while writing.

D. W. Griffith uses offscreen space in his structuring of shots during the 1910 film What Daisy Said, directed for Biograph. Most of the shots to the film are exterior longshots with two or more characters with a static camera. Starring with Gertrude Robinson, Mary Pickford enters the frame from the far left of the screen and exits near to the end of the shot from that same side. In a subsequent shot she enters from the right side of the frame, quickly climbs a set of outdoor stairs, exits from the left and then reenters the frame from the left to begin the next shot, her dancing from one side of the screen to the other and the camera cutting almost on her action of entering and exiting to begin each shot. She runs in fron of the camera from the offscreen space that frames the exterior and then runs back to the same side of the screen to exit the frame in a brief shot. She later slowly descends the outdoor stairs during the film to depict despair. Her movement as a unifying image, the moving subject, serves to link the adjacent shots, her movement within the frame carried into each subsequent shot so that the spatial relationships with the frame of each individual shot are seen with the shot to shot relationships of camera position and reposition, character movement linking the image to create narrative continuity as the viewer is brought to the edges of the rectangular frame. The significant action of the scene bringing an involvement with with the protagonist, the causality in the storyline of the film is constructed without the frequent use of explanatory intertitles.

It is not suprising that Kenneth Macgowan writing as early as 1965 in
Behind the Screen divides early silent film into three periods: 1896-1905;
1906-1915; 1916-1925. Form and content in film technique seem to have
developed together.

In regard to film preservation and the search for silent film, in April
2005, United Press International reported that films dating back as far as
1910, including one film entitled "Little Snow White", were found by the
Huntley Archive., the unknown of collection totalling more than six
hundread cans of film kept hidden in an airplane hanger in the south of
England. To add to this, during June of 2006, the only copy of the first British narrative film, a film depicting a pickpocket directed by Birt Acres in 1895, as well as as many as six films that were included in the body of work filmed by Thomas Edison, was found in an attic in West Midlands, England. In his biography of Victor Sjöström, Bengt Forslund exuberantly remarks upon the discovering of a hitherto unknown copy of Predators of the Sea (Sea Vultures, Havsgama, 1914), starring Richard Lund, Greta Almroth and John Ekman, and not so exuberantly on the unlikelihood of a copy of Victor Sjöström's film The Divine Woman, starring Greta Garbo, being found in the future. On the film Predators of the Sea, Forslund writes, "Sjöström recounts his story simply and straitforwardly in remarkably well thought-out images of the kind we already know from Ingeborg Holm."

Swedish film historian Forsyth Hardy can be quoted as having written, "The Danes claim to have made the first dramtic film, in 1903". Denmark had had its own early
silent cinema, the Nordisk Film Kompagni having had been founded in 1906,
most of the early title="Danish Silent Film"
href="">narrative films
for the most part "thrillers, tragedies and love stories" (Astrid Soderberg
Widding), or "the social melodrama and dive novel that made a hit from 1910 onwards" (Bengt Forslund), were directed by Viggo Larsen, who directed The Black
(1906), Revenge (1906) and The Magic Bed
(Tryllesaekken, 1907) in Denmark : Urban Gad directed Asta Nielsen
in her first film, The Abyss (Afgrunden, 1910) in Denmark, a
film often written about due to her popularity and to a scene contained in
it in which she dances eroticly; both directors went to Germany. Among the films produced by Nordisk Films Kompagni in 1906 was Bonden i Kobenhavn (Hunting of a Polar Bear), directed by its manager, Ole Olsen. Having established the Biografteatret, Copenhagen's first movie theater, Ole Olsen established its first production company in 1906, Ole Olsen's Film Industry, which that year filmed Pigeons and Seagulls (Duer og Maager). Ole Olsen also produced the 1906 films The Funeral of King Christian IX (King Christian IX's Bisaettelse) and The Proclamation of King Fredderick VIII (King Frederick VIII's Proklamtion). There were thirty one silent films produced by Ole Olsen that were given to the Royal Library during the year 1913 to begin the Danish Film Archive. Peter Elfelt donated twenty silent films a year later, making him, with Ole Olsen and Anker Kirkeby, one of the original founders of Det danske Filmmuseum. Many of the silent films made by the Nordisk Films Kompagni, although produced by Ole Olsen, still have an unattributed director, one example of this being the film Rouges (Gartyve), filmed in 1906. Vitriolic Drama (Vitrioldrama), Violinist's Romance (Violinistens Roman), Rivalinder (A Woman's Duel/The Rivals), Gelejslaven, Tandpine, Knuste Haaband and Kortspillere were also filmed by Nordisk Films Kompagni during 1906. In 1906 Louis Halberstadt for Nordisk Films Kompagni directed the film Konfirmation, photographed by Rasmus Bjerregaard, it having been the first Danish silent film in which Greta Garbo co-star Jean Hersholt (The Rise and Fall of Susan Lennox) was to appear.

Larsen was quite possibly the first director to cut from one long shot of
a scene to its reverse angle, a long shot of the scene from an opposite
angle (Rovens Brod, 1907). The Danish photographer Axel Sorensen began filming for Larsen in 1906 and continued solely with Larsen untill 1911, when he began photographing first for Danish director August Blom and then for Danish director Urban Gad under the name of Axel Graatkjae. One film photographed by Axel Sorensen that Viggo Larsen is particularly noted for directing is The Lion Hunt (Lovejaten, 1907). In the year 1906, the actress Margrethe
Jespersen had starred in the films Anarkistens svigermor (Larsen),
Knuste hab, Caros dod, Haevnet (Larsen) and
Fiskerliv i Norden (Larsen). In 1907, the actress Oda Alstrup was
directed by Viggo Larsen and photgraphed by Axel Graatkjaer Sorensen for Nordisk Films in Camille
(Kameliadamen), Den glade enke, Trilby (Lille Trilby), and in Aeren
tabt-alt tabt
and Handen (Haanden), both of which she had starred in with actress Thora Nathansen. Clara Nebelong appeared with her in
the film Roverens brud. Among the films directed by Larsen in 1907 were A Modern Naval Hero (En Moderne Sohelt) and Once Upon a Time (Der var engang) with Clara Nebelong, Gerda Jensen and Agnes Norlund Seemann, both of which he appeared in as an actor. Actress Clara Nebelong also that year appeared in the films Vikingeblod and From the Rococo Times (Rosen), also directed by Viggo Larsen and photographed by Axel Sorensen. The Artist's Model's Sweetheart (Den Romersk Model) is among the films credited as having been directed by Viggo Larsen in 1908. Viggo Larsen in 1908 directed actress Lili Jansen in several films photographed by Axel Graatkjaer Sorensen, including Lille Hanne, Peters Held, Urmagerens Bryllup and The School of Life (Gennem Livets Skole), which also starred Thora Nathansen. Viggo Larsen that year also directed Mathilde Nielsen and Pterine Sonne in the film The Capricious Moment (Capriciosa). In 1909, Viggo Larsen directed the film Child as Benefactor (Barnet som Velgorer). Emmanuel Tvede directed only one film in Denmark, Faldgruben, and yet in it was future star Emilie Sannom in one of her first screen appearances, Danish actress Kate Fabian also having appeared in the film.

In Denmark Viggo Larsen had played Sherlock Holmes to Holger-Madsen's Raffles in both Sherlock Holmes Risks His Life (Sherlock Holmes i livsfare, 1908) and Sherlock Holmes Two. Both films were photographed by Axel Sorensen. Einar Zangenberg would play the armchair detective in Larsen's Sherlock Holmes Three. Larsen would also for the Nordisk Films Kompagni direct the Holmes' films The Singer's Diamonds (Sangerindens diamanter, 1908) starring Holger Madsen, The Grey Lady Den Graa Dame, 1909) and Cab Number 519 (Drokes 519), starring August Blom with Larsen as the consulting detective. Viggo Larsen would soon thereafter travel to Germany, where he directed and starred with Wanda Truemann in Arsene Lupin Against Sherlock Holmes (Arsene Lupin Contra Sherlock Holmes, 1910) before directing the even more successful Sherlock Holmes contra Professor Moryarty (1911). Alwin Nuess, a Danish actor who had starred as Sherlock Holmes in One Million Dollar Bond (Millionobilgationen/The Stolen Legacy) and in The Hound of the Baskervilles (1914, Rudolf Meinert), would also go to Germany. In Denmark actor Otto Lagoni would portray Sherlock Holmes for Nordisk Films Kompagni, starring with Danish silent film actress Ingeborg Rasmussen in Den Sorte A Haand (Mordet i Bakerstreet) and with Poul Welander in Den Forklaedete Barnepige (The Bogus Governess). Otto Lagoni also during 1911 appeared under the direction of William Augustinus in the Sherlock Holmes film Den Sorte Haette. Einar Zangenberg would in 1911 appear as Holmes in the Danish silent filmHotelthieves (Hotelmysterierne.)

In addition to Nordisk Films, during 1910 the Regina Kunst Kompagni briefly produced films in Denmark, notably the first three films in which actress Clara Weith Pontoppidan had, as Clara Weith, starred, Elskovsleg, Djaevelsonaten, and Ett Gensyn, in which she starred with actresses Annegrette Antonsen and Ellen Aggerholm. Director Axel Strom directed Clara Weith in the film Dorian Grays Portraet, in which she starred with Valdemar Psilander as well as his having directed Johanne Dinesen in the film Den doe Rotte. Danish silent film actress Emilie Sannon also starred on screen for the Regina Kunst Kompagni, her having starred in the film Doden.

The versatility of Asta Nielsen, directed by her husband Urban Gad, was especially shown from film to film. The Abyss begins with a shot of the actress Asta Nielsen as Magda and her boarding a train as though it were a whistle stop. It continues with exterior longshots, untill the two characters are seen at an outdoor coffee table. There is a cut to an interior where she is seen in full shot opening a letter, the camera distance well behing the Vitagraph nine foot line, particularly for an interior filmed in 1910. Seated, the next shot shows her at a closer angle, filmed higher than her as she is reading the letter. It then cuts to a train station and then a series exterior full shots of her arriving in the country. The scene then shifts to an outdoor circus and an exterior full shot during which she dances. The storyline becomes dramatic, or sensational in its being melodramatic, where she flees with the circus, much like in the Greta Garbo film The Rise and Fall of Susan Lennox. There is in the film a near panning shot following characters as a horse drawn carriage parks near the exterior of a building, the camera then cutting to the interior where she is recieving guests.

The Black Dream (Dem Sorte Drom), filmed the folling year is remarkable in Gad's use of silhouette. Asta Nielsen appears in the film with actor Valdemar Psilander. In Denmark, Urban Gad also directed actresses Emilie Sannom and Ellen Kornbeck, among the films Gad directed for Nordisk Films in 1911 two having been When Passion Binds Honesty (Dyrekobt Glimmer), in which both actresses appeared with Johannes Poulsen and Elna From, and An Aviator's Generosity (Den Store Flyver, 3 reels), which had starred Christel Holck. Also that year Gad directed the films Spansk Elsker, and Sydens Born in Denmark. It was also that year that Urban Gad and Asta Nielsen would travel to Germany to film for Deutsche Bioscop. Asta Nielsen appeared on screen under Urban Gad's direction with the cinematographer Karl Freund behind the camera that year in the films The Moth (Nachtfalter) and The Strange Bird (Der fremde Vogel). Asta Nieslen also continued in 1911 to appear under Gad's direction in the films The Traitoress (Die Verraterin), Hot Blood (Heisses Blut), In Those Large Eye Glances (In dem grossen Augenblick).

The first href="">Finnish narrative film,
Bootleggers (Salaviinanpolttajat), was given to the Swedish
director Louis Sparre, the film photographed by Frans Engstrom in 1907.
Jaenzon filmed The Dangers of a Fisherman's Life- An Ocen Drama
(Fiskarliv ets farer-et Drama paa havet), an early title="Norwegian silent film-filmmuseet"
silent film
under the direction of Hugo Hermansen. The first two
Finnish directors, Erkki Karu and Teuvo Puro, are particularly noted for
their use of nature as a background and landscape to complement the
thematic, and yet Sylvi (1913) has been particularly likened to the
film Ingeborg Holm, directed by Victor Sjöström. Peter Cowie notes
that Karu's The Logroller's Bride (Koskenlaskijan morsian,
1923) has an exterior landscape scene that had been filmed by using six
different cameras; the director later remade the film as the first Finnish
film to include sound. The film Tukijoella (Log River) continued the influence of the Scandinavian film directors upon the silent cinema of Finland in their being a relation shown between the characters of the film and its background landscape, it having appeared in theaters in 1928. Also directing in Finland in 1913 was playwright Kaarle Halme who brought the films (The Bloodless Ones/Verettomat) and The Young Pilot (Nuori luotsi) to silent film audiences who had previously looked to the theater; the photplay, although quickly a new form of literature to convey the dramtic, and melodramtic, was still in Finland before 1919 contained within static camera angles without the frequent use of editing to complicate plotlines and character relationships, characters often shown in full figure, at the same camera distance, as at Vitagraph studios in the United States.

Peter Lykke-Seest, who had founded the first
Norwegian film studio, the Christiana Film Company, was a screenwriter for
Victor Sjöström (and Mauritz Stiller) before his directing The Story of
a Boy
(Historien om en gut) in 1919.

Aside from this was the consideration that once films had been begun to
have been made that were two reels or more, dialouge,through the use of
intertitles, and expository descriptions could be added to the way the
causality of plotline was developed during a film and how character was
delineated, intertitles that would not only lend continuity to the linear
progression of storyline but also bring unity to it. Victor Sjöström later
would in fact use intertitles to act as retrospective first person, voice
over narrative. As well, narrative would no longer need to be only linear
in regard to its structure and the syntax of film could include
transitions between scenes; technique, in part could become the

Technique would become the ordering of images within an arrangement of
shots that would bring seperate compositions into a relation within
narrative- the film technique that would later be described by Christian
Metz as consisting of syntagmatic categories, technique that would avail
questions regarding whether a segment would be autonomous, chronological,
linear, narrative or descriptive, continuous and whether it would be
organized, was beginning to be decided. Metz in fact had viewed the
narrative function in cinema as being what had brought about its
development, it being more than possible that the techniques developed by
Ince and Griffith were the exingencies of narrative form.

That Sjöström the actor would later be shown in both long shot and
close shot in the same sequence shows the relation between the character
on the screen and the space within the frame; in that the camera had been
becoming increasingly authorial, it often seemed to provide an embodied
viewpoint from which an idealized spectator could view onscreen space, and
by its being authorial, could seem to reposition the spectator during the
film through the use of a second central character. While discussing film technique as something that is a reproduction of the images before the spectator, Raymond Spottiswoode claims that "it can never attain to art", and yethe adds that there must be a freedom available to the director "if he is to infuse his purpose and character into the beings of nature, to change them that their life becomes more living, their meaning more significant, their vlaue more sure and true." He continues that while it can be put forth that there is only one camera angle that any scene can be photographed from, one relation to the camera that any object can be aquire within the varying spatial relations that it takes while arranged with the other objects in front of the camera, "there is no reason to suppose that the choice of a camera angle is not perfectly free." The attention of the spectator could be directed spatially. It is by being
authorial that the camera can impart meaning, technique not only to have
brought an objectification of what was in front of the camera but also of
the camera itself as it observed the actors within the scene, as it
photographed the object, the structure of the image deigned by the
placement of the camera, the pleasure of the spectator derived in part
from the parallel between the spectator and the camera. In regard to the
camera being authorial, a group member of an e-mailed silent film mailing
list recently in a post quoted a postulate of the theory of there being a
cinema of attractions, "The narrator in the early films is sporadic; an
occaisional specter rather than a unified presence."

Sjöström had
said, "At one time, Moje was without any doubt in love with Garbo, and she
with him." and she had reiterated that if ever she were to love anyone it
would be Mauritz Stiller, the director who had taken her to see her first
motion picture in the United States, The Lady Who Lied (1925, eight
reels) with title="Lewis Stone-Silent Film"
href="">Lewis Stone
and Nita Naldi. Fredrick Sands quotes Victor Sjöström as having
said, "For a certain time at least Stiller was in love with her and she
with him. They told me so themselves." Stiller, after having met cameraman
Julius Jaenzon, had begun directing for Svenska Bio in 1912 with Mother
and Daughter
(Mor och Dotter), in which he acted with Anna
Norrie and Lily Jacobsson and then in the same year The Black Masks
(De svarta maskerna), in which Sjöström acted with Lili Bech and
the film The Tyrannical Fiancee (Den Tyranniske Fastmannen),
in which he starred with Agda Helin. Produced by AB Svenska Biografteatern, the film The Black Masks, is a circus movie in regard to its subject. It has been noted that the film is exceptionally edited, its numerous, varied scenes, "a constantly changing combination of interiors and exteriors, close-ups and panoramic shots." (Forsyth Hardy). title="Greta Garbo"
later had met Jaenzon on a train to Rasunda, Sweden after a screen test
for Stiller. Waiting for Stiller to arrive for the screentest, Jaenzon had
told Garbo, "You're the loveliest girl I've ever seen walk into this

Victor Sjöström and Mauritz Stiller had met in Stockholm the day before
the shooting of the film The Gardner (The Broken Spring
) at the studios in Lindingo was to begin. Bengt Forslund
chronicles that, "Sjöström did not know Stiller before they became
associated at Svenska Bio, but he was aware of his reputation." It had
been early in 1912 that Magnusson had met with screen writer Erik
Ljungberger who gave Magnusson Victor Sjöström's name and who telephoned
him for Magnusson. Victor Sjöström that year wrote and directed The
Marriage Bureau
(Aktenskapsbryan) with Victor Lundberg and
directed A Secret Marriage (Ett hemlight giftermal) with
Hilda Borgström, Smiles and Tears (Lojen och tarar) with Mia
Hagman, a film written by Charles Magnusson and photographed by Julius Jaenzon, A Summer's Tale (En Sommar Saga) and Lady
Marion's Summer Flirtation
(Lady Marion's sommarflirt, photographed by Julius Jaenzon and starring Hilda Borgström.

That year Paul Garbagni directed both Victor Sjostrom and Mauritz Stiller with actress Astrid Endgelbrecht in the film Springtime of
(In the Spring of Life, I livets var), adapted from the novel The First Mistress
by August Blanche- almost as soon as Swedish cinema had begun, it had
begun adapting the novel to film; the significance of the cinema of
attractions would now be in the shot, the placement of the shot within the
scene, display relegated to frame compositions.

Eric Malmberg that year directed the films Oceanbreakers and Stolen Happiness (Branningar eller Stulen
) with Lily Jacobsson, Tollie Zellman and Victor Arfvidson, Det
grona halsbandet
with Lilly Jacobsson and Agda Helin and Samhallets dom, with Lily
Jacobsson, Agda Helin, Tollie Zellman and actress Lisa Holm in the first film in which she was to appear, as well as Agaton and Fina (Agaton och
), and Two Swedish Emigrants in America (Tva svenska
emigranters afventyr i Amerika
), both photographed by Julius Jaenzon,
also with Lily Jacobsson. John Ekman directed Swedish actress Stina Berg in her first appearance on the screen in the film
The Shepherd Girl (Saterjantan), photographed by Hugo Edlund for Svenska Biografteatern. The Last Performance (Dodsritten under
), Musiken makt, starring Lily Jacobsson,
Jupiter pa jorden, with Axel Ringvall, and Tva broder with
Birger Lundstedt and Eugen Nilsson, were filmed by Georg af Klercker.
Algot Sandberg that year directed the film Farbror Johannes ankomst
till Stockholm

In Malmo, Sweden, for the Danish film producer Frans Lundberg and Stora Biografteatern, Paul Welander in 1912 contributed the films The Pace
That Kills
(Broder och syster), The Circus Queen
(Circusluft), and two films photographed by photographer Ernst Dittmer, The Boa Constrictor (Ormen), The
(Karlekens offer) and Princess Charlotte
(Komtessan Charlotte), starring Phillipa Frederiksen and Agners Nyrup-Christensen, Welander also that year having starred with Ida
Nielsen in The Bonds of Marriage (Karleksdrommar) a film
made by Frans Lundberg. Charles Magnusson would direct The Green
(Det grona halsbandet) and The Vagabond's Galoshes (Kolingens galosher), both photographed by Julius Jaenzon. Jaenzon that year was the
photographer and director of the film Condemned by Society.

1912 was also the year that Hjalmar Söderberg, often considered the nearest contemporary to Strindberg, published the novel
The Most Serious Game (Den allvarsamm leken) and the one act play Aftonstjarnan. The first publication to appear written by
Par Lagerkvist, People (Manniskor), a collection of short stories was also
printed that year as well.

In the United States, Mary
Pickford had a year earlier left Biograph where she had filmed under
the direction of D. W. Griffith and Frank Powell to film with Thomas Ince
at IMP studios during the first two months of the beginning of 1911. Among
the films she made there were Their First Misunderstanding, The
, Maid or Man, At Duke's Command, The
, While the Cats Away, Her Darkest Hour and
Artful Kate. Before returning to Biograph, she spent the last two
months of 1911 at The Majestic Company, filming under the direction of
George Loane Tucker and Owen Moore.

The year of 1912 was to mark the first film with Lillian and Dorothy
Gish, An Unseen Enemy, along with the Mary Pickford film A New
York Hat
, the first photoplay written by Anita Loos. Within the short scenes of the film, Mary Pickford is shown in to the right of the screen in medium close shot trying on a hat, her hands and bended elbows in frame. Griffith cuts on the action of her leaving the frame to exterior shots. In a later scene, Griffith positions her to the left of the screen, and, his already having shown time having elapsed between the two two scenes, then brings the ensuing action back to the right of the screen frame. As an early reversal of screen direction, or screen positioning, there is the use of scene editing in between the complementary positions of showing her in the same interior. During the film, the actress is, almost referentially, often kept in right profile, facing the right of the screen's frame.

During the Biograph silent film short The Musketeers of Pig Alley (1912) Griffith frames Lillian Gish at a table, only half of her visible in the frameline untill she leaves the table, and then cuts on the action of her leaving the frame as she crosses the screen from one interior into the adjacent one, her crossing the screen from left to right in both the shots Griffith had edited together, toward the far left side of the screen in the first, toward the middle of the screen in the next. Vertical space allows a disclosure in the film, one allowed by the moving figure as Gish skirts from one room to the next, her moving into the unexpected space the audience may or may not have already seen where there is action that has been simultaneously transpiring within the temporality of the film. In a film from the same year in which Gish only briefly appears, A Burgler's Dilema, Griffith again cuts on action often, particularly during entrances, but interpolates very brief exterior shots in between scenes, increasing their frequency and interspersing within the scene as the film continues and the pace of the action hastens, or complicates, with the plotline.

If it is that spatial compostition can be included as a part of the grammar, or syntax, of film, within that is pictorial continuity and the use of visual tropes. A spatial relation is established through screen direction as figure movment becomes motion within the frame and action that the camera can cut on before continuing it in the subsequent frame, the camera cutting within the scene for effect. The spatial movement of the character is continued from shot to shot, linking each of them through a directional continuity, and yet, within the scene, the contour of objects, their proximity to the camera and their arrangement in front of the camera as its various positions cause it to become more authorial, is varied with each contrast between the adjacent shots within the temporality of the scene. As an inscription of its own being authorial, the camera could participate in narrative drama as an unseen presence, particularly through its own repostioning, unobtrusive if omnipresent in its guiding the spectator toward the action of the scene. Establishing the relation between spectator and content, the actress as an element of the film's pictorial compostion, in turn, could, as an aesthetic object, often substitute for the gaze of the female spectator, particularly as a motif for femininity, quite possibly more noticebly during cut in close ups where, while photographed with the space between her and the camera only represented by her near filling the area of the frame, spectator interest would recess into brief plateau before the narrative would climb into an increase of identification untill the quiet, slow stillness of the close up that would come next.

The following
year Mary Pickford would go from Biograph
to Famous Player to make Bishop Carriage (four reels), Hearts
(four-five reels) and A Good Little Devil (five reels)
with the director Edwin S. Porter. Of the film, Pickford wrote, "we were
made to read our entire speeches before the camera. The result was a
silent reproduction of the play, instead of what should have been, a
restatement of the play in terms of action and pantomine." For the most
part, when filming her, Porter used medium and long shots; Kirkland would
later use the close up. Writing about 1912 in her autobiography Sunshine
and Shadow, title="Ioala's Promise;digital print copyrighted FLUSHNET"
href="">silent film actress
Mary Pickford remembers her first close up, "Billy took the shot, which was
a semi-close up, cutting me at the waist...It was a new image of my face
that I was waiting to see. What a frightening experience when my
grotesquely magnified face finally flashed on the screen...But I was
critical enough to notice the make up...'I think there's too much eyebrow
pencil and shadowing around my eyes,' I said. Later,on a seperate
occaision, she had realized there was low light reflected back towards her
while she was readying her make up for a scene and had asked her director
to use artificial light from below while filming her. The autobiography of silent film star Douglas Fairbanks, Laugh and Live, is available online from sunrisesilents.

Having directed The New Cook, The Indian Massacre and
Across the Plains the year before, Thomas Ince directed the silent films The Invaders (three reels), starring its co-director, Francis Ford,and Ethel Grandin, Shadows of the Past and Custer's Last Fight in
1912. Ince, and the directors that photographed with him, have been
attributed with having been among the early directors to have varied
camera postitions with the use of more than one shot during a scene,
particularly the use of the reverse angle to cut around a scene and its
use to develop the action of the scene during its climax. It is often acknowledged that Thomas Ince was the first director to use a shooting script. Author Kenneth MacGowan notes that Ince "strove for a theatric effect", but only with scripts that were "direct and tight" and used intertitles to advance character action, dramatically relating events as a technique of exposition. If this was later remarked upon as being part of a comparision and contrast, Mary Pickford was to write, "As I recall, D. W. Griffith never adhered to a script. Improvisation was frequently the order of the day. Sometimes the camera registered an impromputu piece of off-story action and that too stayed in the film." Lillian Gish in no way contradicts her by writing about how Griffith used the editing room to develop storyline, particularly by adding close ups and shots of objects, "Later, he would make sense of the assorted shots in the cutting room, giving them drama and continuity." These cut-in shots were inserted into the scene to add "depth and dimension to the moment".

During 1912 the
first film that would star Mary Miles Minter would appear on the marquee,
the one reel The Nurse and Anna Q. Nilsson would make her first
film, the one reel Molly Pitcher. Oddly enough, Nilsson's studio,
Kalem, had given the title role of The Vampire to Alice Hollister,
the two later united on the screen in A Sister's Burden (1915). In
addition to the films of Louise Glaum,whom Fred Niblo directed in
Sex (1920, seven reels), and Valeska Suratt, another film of that
title had starred Olga Petrova, it seeming that quickly " 'vamp' became an
all too common noun and in less than a year it was a highly active verb,
transitive and intransitive" (Ramsaye). Stiller had directed Sjöström in
his first roles as an actor in For sin Karlekskull (Because Her
), When Love Kills (Nar karleken dodar) in which he
starred with Georg af Klercker, The Child (Barnet) and,
coincidently, The Vampire (Vampyren/The Nightclub
),in which he starred with Lili Bech. Anna Q. Nilsson would
appear in War's Havoc, Under a Flag of Truce and The
Soldier Brothers of Suzanna
in 1912. title="Lillian Gish"
would later play a vamp in Diane of the Follies (1916).
Birgitta Steene writes that in the films of Ingmar Bergman, "the vamp is
portrayed as the social victim rather than the embodiment of sin."

Danish silent film direct Wilhelm Gluckstadt began directing in 1912 with the film The Blue Blood (Det blaa Blod), scripted by Stellan Rye and starring Elina Jorgen Jensen, Grethe Ditlevsen and Gudrun Houlberg. That year Wilhelm Gluckstadt also directed the exceptionally beautiful Danish film actress Eimilie Sannom in the films Konfetti, De to brodre and Zigeunerorkestret. Exceptionally pretty Danish film actress Ebba Thomsen first appeared on the screen in 1912 under the direction of Robert Dinesen in two films, Den glade Lojtnant and Lystrallen. Danish film director Aage Brandt during 1912 would direct Vera Brechling in A Death Warning (Dodsvarlet)

Danish silent film director August Blom in 1912 filmed with the photographer Johanne Ankerstjerne for Nordisk Film, notably with the actress Clara Weith Pontoppidan, whom he directed in the film Faithful Unto Death (Et Hjerte af Guld) and had directed a year earlier in the film In the Prime of Life (Ekspedtricen), photographed by Axel Sorensen. Blom that year also for Nordisk Film directed Robert Dinesen in the films Stolen Treaty (Secret Treaty/ Den Magt Trede and The Black Chancellor (Den Sorte Kansler) with Valdemar Psilander, Ebba Thomsen and Jenny Roelsgaard, The Black Chancellor having been a film in which Danish silent film scriptwriter Christian Schroder appeared on screen as an actor. That year August Blom also directed A High Stake (Hjaerternes Kamp).

Danish silent film director Carl Th. Dreyer had in fact begun as a writer, contributing the screenplay to the film The Brewer's Daughter (Bryggerens dattar, 1912), directed by Rasmus Ottesen and starring Emanuel Gregers. He was to write every screenplay that he was to direct. Tom Milne, who begins his volume on Dreyer with an account of his having seen the director at a screening of Gertrude, quotes him as having said, " I know that I am not a poet. I know that I am not a great playwright. That is why I prefer to collaborate with a true poet and with a true playwright." Dreyer continued in 1913 by writing the screenplays to The Baloon Explosion (Balloneskplosionen), directed by Kay van de Aa Kuhle, Chatollets hemmelighed, directed by Hjalmar Davidsen, Hans og Grethe, directed by Sofus Wolder, and The War Correspondent (Krigskorrespondent), directed by William Gluckstadt and starring Emanuel Gregers,Grethe Ditlevsen, Ellen Tegner and Emilie Sannom. In 1914, Dreyer scripted Down With Your Waepons (Ned Med Vaabnene), directed by Holger Madsen and photographed by Marius Clausen.

Danish film director Benjamin Christensen, however by 1913 had begun directing with his first film Sealed Orders (Det hemmelinghstulde X), a melodrama that had included a use of montage in its editing, followed by Blind Justice (Haevnansnat, 1915), both films having starred the actress Karen Caspersen. The two films by Christensen were of the only three produced by the Dansk Biograf Compagni. Benjamin Christensen had starred as an actor with actress Karen Caspersen and Ellen Malmberg during 1913 in Skaebnebaeltet, directed by Danish silent film director Sven Rindom, his also that year having starred in the films Children of the Stage (Scenens Born, Bjorn Bjornson), starring Bodil Ipsen and Aud Egede-Nissen and Lille Klaus Og Store Klaus (Elith Reumert). Children of the Stage was produced by Dania Biofilm Kompagni.

For Ingmar Bergman,the first notable Swedish film is Ingeborg Holm from
1913. In an interview with Jonas Sima, he describes the directing of Victor
Sjöström, "It is one of the most remarkable films ever made...Often he
works on two planes, something being played out in the foreground,but
then,through a doorway for instance,one sees something quite different is
going on in the background.". Produced by AB Svenska Biograteatern and five reels in legnth, it is also his
screenplay from a play by Nils Krook which Sjöström had adapted for the
stage in 1907. Like Sarah Bernhardt, Hilda Borgström had came to film.
Also in the film are Aron Lindgren and George Gronroos. William Larsson
and Carl Barcklind both appear in the film as well. It is almost
astounding that under the title Give Us This Day the legnth of the
film is listed as having reached seven reels. Einar Lauritzen wrote, "The
primitive tableau of the time cannot destroy the genuine feeling for both
character and enviornment which Sjöström brought to almost every

Much like it being that the films of Bergman "concern interior
journeys: journeys into the soul of the character, or into the souls of
two related characters" (John Simon), that Ingeborg Holm was a
contemporary drama is particularly a matter for aesthetics, as was the
observation that there may have been the photoplay of intimacy, the
photoplay of action or the photoplay of splendor. As a side note from the present author, the caption on the cover to the filmed version of The Painted Veil, starring Naomi Watts reads, "Sometimes the greatest journey is the distance between two people." What is beautiful is not
only that the images of film consist of our being in a position to them
spectatorially, or the look that is entailed within suture, but that
behind the close ups of faces there is a character, quite often one in the
midst of drama- if the cinema of attractions was followed by a cinema of
narrative integration, what concerns aesthetics is that no matter how
maudlin or whether or not plot was translated into fantasy, the cinema had
begun to develop character more fully, more deeply. Bengt Forslund writes,
"I am fairly convinced that it was always the fate of the individual that
intrigued Sjöström- not the circumstances that led to it."

Interestingly enough, one of the best explanations of classical narrative construction, narrative form which is often based on there being a casual relationship between events that are connected spatially during the film brought about by its characters, comes from the Swedish director Ingmar Bergman. In his autobiography Images, Ingmar Bergman relates that it was Stina Bergman, then head of the script department, who had asked for him at Svensk Filmindustri. She and her husband Hjalmar Bergman had in fact met with Victor Sjöström while in the United States, where Stina Bergman had acquired the technique of scriptwriting. "This technique was extremely obvious, almost rigid; the audience must never have the slightest doubt where they were in the story. Nor could there be any doubt about who was who, and the transitions between various points of the story were to be treated with care. High points should be allotted and placed at specific places in the script and culmination had to be saved for the end. Dialougue had to be kept short." Author David Bordwell often approximates this description of continuity in the feature film. Bergman continues in the autobiography to write that many of the remarks that Stina Bergman made at that time were treasured by him and that Hjalmar Bergman was his idol.

title="D.W.Griffith-Silent Film"
href=""> src="LCPV5.gif">

no rights or restrictions-Film Preservation Associates

The Miller's Daughter, The Song of the Shirt (1908) and
A Corner in Weat (1909) directed by D. W. Griffith, are early films
that depicted the individual within a social context, the early photoplay Falling
directed by Alice Guy Blanche the year prior to the filming of
Ingeborg Holm, also being among films which centered its characters around
a social drama. Later films, including The White Rose (1923), with
Mae Marsh, more elaborately presented theme as being intertwined with the
drama in which the characters were situated. Sweden, in 1953, made The
Bread of Love
(Karlekens brod). Writing about the films of Victor Sjöstrom, Bengt Forslund notes, "Guilt Redeemed, shot in the early summer of 1914, may perhaps be seen as an attempt to repeat the success of Ingeborg Holm. Guilt Redeemed (Skana Skuld) starred actress Lili Bech.

The films that Victor Sjöström had made in 1913 were scheduled to be
shot within one or two weeks. Among them were Half-Breed
(Halvblod) with href="">Karin Molander, its
screenwriter Peter Lykke-Seest, The Voice of Blood (Blodets
) with Greta Almroth and Ragna Wettergreen, The Conflicts of
(Livets konflikter) starring Gösta Ekman, A Good Girl
Should Solve Her Own Problems
(Bra flicka reder sig sjalv) with
Clara Pontoppidan and Jenny Tschernichin and The Clergyman
(Prasten), starring Clara Pontoppidan and Egil Eide. Alongside Sjöström, that year Maurtiz
Stiller would film Nar larmklockan ljunder, with Lilly Jacobsson,
en pojke I livets strid, The Modern Suffragette (Den
moderna suffragetten
), Brother Against Brother (People of
the Border, Gransfolken
), which was the film debut of Edith Erastoff
and in which Anders Henrikson had appeared, The Girl From Abroad
(The Unknown Woman, Den okanda), with Jenny Tschernichin-Larsson
and Grete Wiesenthal and The Fateful Roads of Life (Pa livets
), with Clara Pontoppidan. No less than four Swedish silent film actresses would make their first appearance on the screen in Mauritz Stiller's film The Fashion Model (Mannekangen) : Ida Otterström, Anna Diedrich, Lili Ziedner and Mary Johnson. Of Svenska Bio in 1913, Begnt Förslund notes, "Sjöström was not always permitted to choose his material." Scripts were submitted to Victor Sjöström much in the same way they would be to directors the United States.

George af Klercker in 1913 directed the film The Scandal (Skandalen) for Svenska Biografteatern, it having starred actresses Anna Norrie and Selma Wiklund af Klerker and having been photographed by Henrik Jaenzon. That year Klercker also appeared with Selma Wiklund af Klercker as an actor in the film With Weapon in Hand (Med vapen i hand), which he directed. Carl Barklind directed his first film that year, The Suicide
(De lefvande dodas klubb), photographed by Julius Jaenzon
and starring Hilma Barcklind and Nils Arehn. Barcklind had appeared as an
actor in the film Den glada ankan in 1907. Paul Welander directed and Axel Briedahl scripted the 1913 film Black Heart and White (Karleken rar) starring Ida Nielsen, Martha Helsengreen and Ellen Hygolm. John Bergqvist that year directed the films
Amors pilar eller Karlek i Hoga Norden and Lappens brud eller
Dramat i vildmarken
, both with Birger Lundstedt and Hildi Waernmark as
well as the film Truls som mobiliserar, with Otto Sandgren. Paul
Welander in 1913 directed A Fallen Star (Hjaltetenoren).
Arthur Donaldson that year directed Lilly Jacobsson in the film En
skargardsflickas roman
, which he wrote and in which also appeared as
an actor.

Danish silent film director Vilhelm Gluckstadt in 1913 brought the film The Black Music Hall (Den sorte Variete), starring Gudrun Houlberg to the screen. Forest Holger-Madsen, who along with his cameraman Marius Clausen is particularly noted for continuing the lighting effects that were singular to early Danish silent film, that year directed The Mechanical Saw, During The Plaugue and The White Woman/The Ghost of the White Lady (Den Hvide Dame), photographed by Clausen and starring Rita Sacchetto.

In 1913, Griffith directed Blanche Sweet in the films Love in an
, Broken Ways, If We Only Knew and Death's
. After the four reel Judith of Bethulia, a film which
interestingly "is really an interior drama, in as much as the majority of
the action is thoughtful, an interchange of emotions between two
characters" (Slide), Griffith had left Biograph for Mutual to direct Gish
in the five reel The Battle of the Sexes. With the advent of the
feature film, in adddition to including a greater number of characters
during each film, directors could more often include minor characters that
would become spectators in the film watching the action, as when the
camera had cut from a master shot to a closer angle, or during panning,
character interest increased as the characters the viewer was watching
were observed by the other characters in the film, the individual
characters on the screen visual elements of the film that were to move in
relation to each other, the film's secondary characters framing the action
and visual interest of the film. The editing of Griffith would in fact
begin to shift from one group of characters to another more often.

Betty Nansen, before her later appearing on the the silver screen in the United States, made her first two films in Demark in 1913, Bristet Lykke (A Paradise Lost, August Blom) and Prinsesse Elena (The Princess's Dilemma, Holger-Madsen). While in the United States, Betty Nansen appeared in the films of producer William Fox. Among them, four were directed by J. Gordon Edwards in 1915: A Woman's Resurrection, The Song of Hate, scripted by Rex Ingram, Should a Mother Tell, also written by Rex Ingram, and Anna Karenina (five reels), scripted by Clara Beranger.

Lon Chaney appeared in his first films in 1913, among those being
Back to Life (Alan Dwan, two reels), The Lie, Discord and Harmony and The
. There were two film adapations of A Study in Scarlet
photographed in 1914, one in the United States, in which the director
Francis Ford also starred as the detective Sherlock Holmes, the other in
England, produced by British film director George Pearson with James
Braginton in the role. The latter film was followed by a version of The
Valley of Fear
, with H. A. Saintsbury, in 1916.

Mauritz Stiller and Victor Sjöström both had continued to direct in
1914 and 1915, the former with His Wife's Past (Hans hustrus
), The Avenger (Hamnaren) ,which, starring
Karin Molander, was the first film in which the actress Tyra Dorum had
appeared on the screen, Playmates (Lekkamraterna), The
Red Tower
(Det Roda tornet), written by Charles Magnusson and
starring Karin Molander, Stormy Petrel (Stormfageln),
starring Lilly Jacobsson The Master Thief (Matsertjuven)
with Wanda Rothgardt, Gentleman of the Room (Kammarjunkaren) with
Clara Pontoppidan, Madame de Thebes, starring Karin Molander and
The Dagger (Dolken) starring Lars Hanson.

The latter, Victor Sjöström, continued directing with The Miracle (Miraklet) with Clara Pontoppidan and Jenny Tschernichin-Larsson, photographed by Henrik Jaenzon. In regard to the film, based on a story by Zola, Bengt Forslund views as the foreground to the film Monastery of Sendomir and Love's Crucible with the caution that Sjöström may not truly have had an affinity with making "cloistered romances" much in the way his making The Divine Woman may have been pedestrian, significantly the author adds, "It is clearly the first time that Sjöström consciously made use of a particular stretch of natural landscape as a background to the drama." Victor Sjöström also that year continued with Landshovdingens
, a film adapted by Sjöström from the novels of Marika Stiernstedt, Do Not Judge (Domen icke) starring Hilda
Borgström, Children of the Streets (Gatans Barn), photographed by
Henrik Jaenzon and starring Stina Berg, Love Stronger than Hate
(Karlek Starkare an Hat), starring Emmy Elffors and John Ekman, Daughter of the
High Mountain
(Hogfjalletts dotter), in which Sjöström starred
with Greta Almroth and Lili Bech, Hearts that Meet (Hjartan som
), photographed by Henrik Jaenzon and starring Karin Molander and
Greta Almroth,
The Strike (Strejken), in which Sjöström starred with Lilly
Jacobsson, It Was in May (Det var i Maj),
written by Algot Sandberg and photographed by Henrik Jaenzon, The Price
of Betrayal
(Judaspengar), starring Stina Berg, Stick to
your last, Shoemaker
(Skomakare, bliv vid din last), starring
Stina Berg and In the Hour of Trial (I provingens stund), in
which he starred with Greta Pfeil and Kotti Chave. Recently, the theater in the city of Uppsala where the Swedish silent films Domen icke and Bra flicka reder sig sjalv, directed by Victor Sjöström, and the film Stromfagelin directed by Mauritz Stiller, were first shown has been renovated, restoring it to how it first looked when built in 1914. Victor Sjöström ,incidentally,
had returned to the stage in 1914 and 1915 at the Intima Theatre under the
direction of Gustaf Collijn for a production of Strindberg's play To

After his having starred in the films of Victor Sjöström, Gunnar Tolnaes, who in 1915 appeared in the films One Out of the Many (En av de manga) with Greta Almroth, Lilly Jacobsson and Lili Bech, and When Artists Love (Nar konstnarer alska), returned to Denmark from Sweden to film Doktor X under the direction of Robert Dinesen.

At Svenska Biograteatern in 1914 Axel Breidahl directed King Solomon's Judgement (Salomos drom) with Lili Zeidner
and Stina Berg and the films The Birthday Present (Fodelsedagspresenten) starring Karin
Alexandersson, Stina Berg and Lili Ziedner and The Way to A Man's Heart (Vagen till mannens
) starring Lili Ziedner, Stina Berg and Hilda Borgström, both
photographed by Henrik Jaenzon.

Danish Silent film director Holger-Madsen often filmed with the cinematographer Marius Clausen. Betty Nansen in 1914 starred in his film For the Sake of A Man (Under Skaebnens Hjul), which, also starring Maja Bjerre-Lind, Christel Holch and Ingeborg Jensen, was among those films he photographed with Clausen. In 1914, Danish silent film director Vilhelm Gluckstadt directed the film Youthful Sin (Ungdomssynd), starring Sigrid Neiiendam.

Swedish Film director Edmond Hansen in 1915 directed the film Revenge (Hamnden ar ljuv), his also having that year directed Edith Erastoff in two films for Svenska Biografteatern, A Hero in Spite of Himself (Hjalte mot sin vilja), which was not only the first film photographed by Swedish cameraman Carl Gustaf Florin but also the first film scripted by Swedish screenwriter Oscar Hemberg, and The First Prize (Hosta vinsten), photographed by Julius Jaenzon. Arvid Endglin wrote and directed the film An Error (En
), starring Clara Pontoppidan, William Larsson and Egil Eide
and directed Patrick's Adventures (Patriks aventyr), starring Alfred Lundberg and Hilda
Forsslund, the film having been the first in which she was to appear.

Apparently George af Klercker directed every film but one that was produced by Hasselblads Fotografiska AB from its first film in 1915 untill it merged early in 1918 to become part of Filmindustri AB Skandia early in 1918, and that film was directed by Manne Gothson (Perils of the Big City/Storstadsfaror), who had been Klercker's assistant director, Gothson having had been being the assistant director to the 1915 film In the King's Uniform (I kronas klader). George af Klerker in 1915 contributed the film The Rose of Thistle Island (Rosen pa Tistelon),
the first film in which the actresses Elsa Carlsson and Anna Löfström were to appear. The film was produced by Hasselblads Fotografiska and Victorias Filmbyra. Goteborg, Sweden provided the location in which the studios of Hasselblads Fotografiska AB were housed. Two of Hasselblad's photographers that filmed under the direction of George af Klercker were Gustav A. Gustafson and Sven Pettersson.

Besides the photographers Julius and Henrik Jaenzon, another of
Sweden's cameramen was Hugo Edlund who photographed the film His Father's Crime (Hans
faders brott
, 1915), the director F. Magnussen's first film, it having
starred Richard Lund and Thure Holm. Both Edlund and Julius Jaenzon are
listed as having been the cinematographer to the films Den Moderna
and For sin karleks skull. Magnussen in 1916 also
directed the films The Hermits Wife (Enslingens hustru), starring Greta Almroth,
Her Royal Highness (Hennes kungliga hoghet) ,starring Karin Molander and At the Eleventh Hour (I elfte timmen), also starring
Greta Almroth, each filmed by Hugo Edlund.

It was in 1915 that Frances Marion began writing photoplays, her being
the scenarist to Daughter of the Sea (Charles W. Seay, five reels).
She wrote The Gilded Cage (H. Knoles, five reels) in 1916 and
Stolen Paradise (H. Knoles, five reels), Battle of Hearts (Apfel, five reels)
and The Feast of Life in 1917. Theda Bara would make her first film
in 1915, The Clemenceau Case and two films for the director Herbert
Brenon, Kreutzer Sonata (five reels) and Two Orphans (seven
reels), which had been filmed by Selig in 1911 with Kathlyn Williams.
Montague Love, who appeared with Lillian Gish in Victor Sjöström's The
began in film in 1915 with Exile and in 1916 with A
Woman's Way
, The Gilded Cage, and Bought and Paid

Greta Garbo director Clarence Brown during 1915-1917 was the assistant director and editor at Universal for director Maurice Tourneur. Notably, in 1925 he directed The Goosewoman with Louise Dresser and Constance Bennet for Universal/Jewel. Greta Garbo cameraman William Daniels had been an assistant cameraman at Triangle before becoming chief cameraman at Universal.

1914-1915 was also the brief period during which Dansk Filmfabrik, in Aarhus, Denmark produced the films of director Gunnar Helsengreen, including I dodens Brudeslor (1914), starring Gerda Ring, Jenny Roelsgaard and Elisabeth Stub, Sexton Blake (1915), Menneskeskaebner (1915) and Elskovs Tornevej (1915), also starring Jenny Roelsgaard, Gerda Ring and Elisabeth Stub.

Victor Sjostrom src="terjevigen.jpg" align=right
vspace=2>(photo:cinemateket) Directed by href="">Victor
and photgraphed by Julius Jaenzon, the first of Gustaf
Molander's screenplays to become well known was Terje Vigen (1916),
from the poem by Henrik Ibsen. The intertitles being from the poem, the
structure of a poem would accomodate the structure of a silent film, and
yet the film shows that there was beginning to be a grammar to film
technique of its own. Edison's 1912 The Charge of the Light Brigade
has a similar use of the lines from the poem as intertitles and there had
been an adaptation by the Independent Motion Picture Company of
Hiawatha (1909) with Gladys Hulette as well. The 1912 poem Vanteenheittajat, written in Finland by Eino Leino, was to be filmed shortly after its publication by director Kaarle Halme as Summer (Kesa) with Hilma Rantanen. In regard to film preservation, the film Terje Vigen was rediscovered from a German print in 2004 and the translated restored intertitles charmingly read Svenska Biografteatern at the top framed by their owl logo and are in the from of stanzaic quotation, their being expository. The opening sequence is shot beuatifully and shows Victor Sjostrom portraying Terje Vigen as elderly against a background of the ocean at night during a storm in a series of shots during which he is filmed in blue tint and is shown framed by a doorway in adjacent masked shots alternating between over-the-shoulder and strait on shots, our sharing his view of the storm as well as watching his looking out into it. The intertitles then take the form of narrator as the film cuts to a restropective scene shot in a sepia-like red of Sjostrom as a young man aboard a ship to begin the storyline. Tytti Soila writes,
"The film also established the term 'literary cinema' in Sweden." When
reviewed in the United States, the film was seen as "forcefull despite its
occaisional indulgence in too much sentimentality and moralizing." Bengt
Forslund writing about the film notes, "the explanation is undoubtedly
that the description of Nature plays such a major role. It is really the
sea that has the main part, like the mountains in The Outlaw and His
and the dust strom in Sjostrom's last major work, The
. Appearing in the film with Victor Sjostrom are Bergliot Husberg, Edith Erastoff and
August Falck. Molander had written Miller's Dokument (1916),
directed by Konrad Tallroth and starring Greta Almroth, before writing for
Sjöström. Later, with his film Defiance (Trots, 1952)
Molander was to introduce another screenwriter to modern audiences, Vilgot
Sjöman (Lek pa regnbagen, Playing on the Rainbow, 1958). The film begins the story of Terje Vigen aboard a ship, the early exterior shots including his climbing the mast. Sjostrom cuts from an extreme longshot to a full shot of Terje Vigen sitting on the mast. His wife in the film is portrayed by Swedish silent film actress Bergliot Husberg the interior shots in which she is shown with are for the main part non-titned. Sjostrom is seen in the foreground of a midshot during a tinted exterior shot and then, during the shot, runs from the camera to the background of the shot, the camera then returning to an exterior midshot of the husband and wife. To reinforce his use of the Scandinavian landscape and the foreground of the shot as a source of compositional depth, the interior scenes are again, contrastingly, non-tinted intercut with shots of Terje Vigen silhouetted in the froeground of the shot in front of the expanse of the night sea, the film tinted blue. During the film, the movement within the composition of the frame is often that of the sea. Act Two beins with Terje Vigen having eluded his pursuers. He is show in the foreground of the shot in his skiff rowing against the background of the sea, spotted in a vignette circled masked shot of his pursuers telescope. Crosses at a graveyard are silhouetted against the ocean's horizon to end Act Two. Act Three begins with the same scene that was used to being the film, Sjostrom as elderly looking toward the ocean at night. He leaves his cottage to kneel on the beach, the waves crashing against the rock. Sjostrom espies a sinking craft admist the pounding surf and boards his skiff to aid in their rescue, the ship tossing in the spray of the ocean. In a later shot, Sjostrom leaves his cottage as Edith Erastoff sails away, the film ending with a shot of the crosses at the graveyard near the ocean.

Writing about Victor Sjöström and quoted by Charlotte de Silva for the
Embassy of Sweden in London, Jon Wengström of the Swedish Film Institute
writes, "The pictorial compositions in Havsgamar/Sea Vultures
(1916) and the complex narrative structure in the recently rediscovered
Dodskyssen/Kiss of Death (1916) show a director in full command of
the medium." In addition to The Kiss of Death
(Dodskyssen,four reels), in which Sjöström playing a double role
and which not only uses retrospective narrative but also includes the use
of double exposures, in 1916 Sjöström directed the films Ships that
(Skepp som Motas) with Lili Bech and August Warberg,
Therese, a melodrama which had included intercutting and
retrospective narrative starring Lars Hanson and She Was Victorious
(Hon segrade) , in which he starred with Lili Bech and Jenny
Tschernichin-Larsson. title="Mauritz Stiller-Swedish Film Institute"
directed The Fight for His Heart (Kampen om hans
), starring Karin Molander, His Wedding Night (Hans
), The Lucky Brooch (Lyckonalen), starring
Greta Almroth and The Mine Pilot. The most widely known of
Stiller's films from 1916 were The Ballet Primadonna
(Balettprimadonnan) with Lars Hanson, Love and Journalism
(Karleck och journalistik) with Karin Molander and The Wings
(Vigarne), a film in which photographer Julius Jaenzon appears on
the screen.

Appearing on the screen as as an actor as well, Edmond Hansen at Svenska Biografteatern during 1916 wrote and directed the films The Consequences of Jealousy (Svartsjukans foljder) with Eric
Petschler, Stina Berg and Ellis Elis and Old Age and Folly (Alderdom och darskap) with
Edith Erastoff and Greta Almroth. He that year directed Love's Wanderings (Karlekens
), photographed by Carl Florin and starring Nicolay Johannsen
and Greta Pfeil as well as Pa detta numera vanliga satt, starring
Greta Almroth and Jenny Tschenichin Larsson.

Among the films directed by George af Klerker during 1916 was Aktiebolaget Halsans gava, the first film photographed by cinematographer Gustav A Gustafson and the first film in which actress Tekla Sjöblom was to appear. Also starring in the film are Mary Johnson and Anna Löfström. Tekla Sjoblom began as an actress in 1916, her having appeared in Georg af Klercker's film The Gift of Health (Aktieboolaget Halsans gava), photographed by Carl Gustav Florin. That year the Swedish director Georg af
Klercker also directed Under the Spell of Memories (I minnenas band), written and photographed by Sven Pettersson and starring Elsa Carlsson, Tora Carlsson and Elsa Berglund, as well as having written and directed Triumph of Love (Karleken
), starring Mary Johnson, Tekla Sjoblom, Selma Wiklund Klerker and Lily Cronwin in the first film in which she was to appear and Mother in Law Goes for a Stroll (Svarmor pa vift) starring Greta Johansson, Maja Cassel and Zara Backman. Also that year, Geoge af Klercker wrote and directed the film Calle's New Clothes (Calles
nya klader
), starring Mary Johnson and Tekla Sjoblom, and Calle as a Millionaire
(Calle som miljonar), the first film in which actress Helge Kihlberg was to appear. Actress Gerda Thome Mattssen appearred in two films directed by George af Klerker, the first having been Hogsta visten(1916), in which the director George af Klerker is seen with heron screen as an actor. During 1916, Klerker was allowed to film more professionally in a larger studio, on Otterhallan and in Castles, one being at Borshuset. The running time of the films of George af Klercker that year went from those of a half hour duration, to those lasting an hour. One Swedish webpage can be quoted when looking for the use of landscape in Swedish films and the filming of a direct relationship betwee the motifs in nature and those that develope character, "Like Stiller and Sjöström is af Klerker sparse with the custom of closes-up. that he on your height uses that dramatic effective emphasis in an enviornment that total to be dominated of the entire picture format.

In 1916, F. Magnussen directed Victor
Sjostrom, Lili Bech and Lars Hanson in the film The Gold Spider (Guldspindeln),
photographed by Hugo Edlund for Svenska Biografteatern.

Captain Grogg's Wonderful Journey (Kapten Grogg's underbara resa) in 1916 introduced to Swedish audiences a series of films showcasing the animation of director Victor Bergdahl that would continue untill 1922. One of two films directed by Bergdahl that would use animation to narrate circus stories, Cirkus Fjollinski, also appeared that year.

As part of its Women and the Silent Screen series held June 11-13, 2008, the Cinematecket in Stockholm will be screening a the 1916 Danish film The Queen of the Stock Exchange (Die Borsenkonigin), written and directed by Edmund Edel. The film is from the Nederlands Filmmuseum. Paired with the film will be the trailer to the lost film The Sunken (Die Gesunkenen, Rudolf Walther-Fein, 1925) also starring Asta Nielsen, a film in which she costarred with the actress Olga Tschechova.

August Blom's film The Spider's Prey (Rovedderkoppen, 1916), starring Rita Sacchetto, had been written by Carl Th. Dreyer and the screenwriter Sven Elvestad. That year Dreyer also had co-scripted, with Viggo Carling, the film Evelyn the Beautiful (Den Skonne Evelyn), directed by Anders Wilhelm Sandberg, photographed by Einar Olsen and also starring Rita Sacchetto.

In the United States, Lillian Gish during appeared in the films Sold for
, Flirting with Fate and Pathways of Life. Mae
Marsh had made Hoodoo Ann (five reels) for Triangle as well as
The Wharf Rat (five reels). Mary Pickford that year was filming
under the direction of John B. O'Brien, for whom she made three films five
reels in legnth, The Eternal Grind, The Foundling and
Hulda from Holland. That year she also starred in Poor Little
(Sidney Olcott, seven reels) and Less Than Dust (John
Emerson, seven reels). href="" title="Silent Film">silent film actress Corrine Griffith, "The Orchid Lay of the Screen", appeared in the film The
Last Man
in 1916.

Triangle Film Corporation had been formed in late 1915 to combine the
efforts of Thomas Ince, D. W. Griffith and Mack Sennett. Sennett, who
began at Biograph as an actor under Griffith had founded Keystone Studios
in 1912. Not only was Sennett present at Biograph and Triangle with
Griffith, but as a pioneer of silent film his name is alongside Griffith's
in his contribution to the development of film technique and the
development of a grammar of film, a grammar of scene construction. It may
well be that the comedies of Mack Sennett have their origin in, or are a
continuation of, the earliest of narrative films that prior to 1907, and
prior to Griffith's joining Biograph, had brought together a cinema of
attractions with films that depicted action, or the chase film. Just as
Swedish silent film directors would use nature and landscape as a visual
language, comedy would rely upon the visual in its use of the sight-gag.
Among the comedies of 1912 were Love, Speed and Thrills directed by silent film director Mack Sennett and Love, Loot and Crash, also directed by the silent film pioneer Sennett, both films currently in public domain and both
presently offered online by the Internet Archive, who were kind enough to
write to the present writer and who it is sincerely hoped that in the
future they will return again as my reader.

At Keystone in 1914 Mack Sennett had directed the first films of
Charlie Chaplin, Making a Living and the title="Silent Film"
href="">silent film
Auto Races at Venice
. In 1915, the href="">silent film The Tramp would introduce a Chaplin character that would become familiar
to audiences untill the end of the silent era. title="Silent Film"
comedian Charlie Chaplin would in 1916 leave href="">Essanay studios, where he had made
fourteen films, to film two-reel comedies with the Mutual Company, where
he filmed The Immigrant (1917). Anthony Slide writes that Chaplin
used as much film to shoot The Immigrant as D.
W. Griffith had to film The Birth of A Nation. It was also at
Mutual, where Chaplin had made eight films untill 1923, that Chaplin would
film his first full legnth feature as director.

In 1912, while Stiller was beginning to film comedy in Sweden and Mack
Sennet was beginning to film at Keystone, one of the other studios to
produce comedies was Vitagraph. After joining Vitagraph in 1910, a studio
for which he appeared in the film A Tale of Two Cities (1911) with
Florence Turner and Norma Talmadge, John Bunny quickly became one of the
most beloved of early silent screen comedians, teaming with Flora Finch in
1912 for films that included A Cure for Pokeritis, Stenographers
, Irene's Fascination, and The Suit of Armor. The
1913 film Queen for A Day with John Bunny and the 1915 film
Unusual Honeymoon with Flora Finch was screened July 30,2005 in
Rosslyn, Virginia, near Arlington Virginia, as part of their film festival
of silent comedies, which opened July 28 with the film Pool Sharks
and a retrospective of the films of Mack Sennet, including Billy Bevan in
the film Hoboken to Hollywood (1928).

The Sunbeam, the first film written by June Mathis appeared on
the screen during the year 1916 and Frank Lloyd would direct his first
film, The Code of Marcia Gray (five reels), King Vidor his first
film, Intrigue. Louise Glaum would that year star in The Wolf
(five reels). John Gilbert appeared in the films Apostle of
, Bullets and Brown Eyes (five reels), The Eye of
, Hell's Hinges and The Phantom and Lewis Stone
appeared in his first films, The Man Who Found Out (1915) and
Honor's Altar (Raymond B. West, 1916, five reels).

href=""> alt="Ingmar Bergman-Selma Lagerlof" hspace=2
src="66_2.jpg" vspace=2>

In directing The Girl From Marsh Croft (Tosen fran
, 1917) for AB Svenska Biografteatern, title="Victor Sjostrom-Swedish Film Director"
href="">Victor Sjostrom

began a marriage between novel and film in his adapting the novels of title="Elin Klinga-Selma Lagerlof"
-one that would establish Swedish silent cinema as being f
ilmic poetry. It is also his screenplay, as are the other screenplays he
adapted from her novels, each of them having been reviewed by Lagerlöf.
Writing in 1971 that the films of Swedish silent cinema were those to
which "the prescence of mountain and pastoral landscapes gave a dimension
of authenticity and elemental persuasiveness", Peter Cowie remarks upon
Sjöström's use of bucolic subjects, David Robinson upon Sjöström's
depiction of man's relationship to nature. Both find something spiritual
or supernatural to the writings of Selma Lagerlöf, as though within the
relation to the character's surroundings there is a solitude. Lauritzen
noted that there is often the "juxtaposition of man and nature" in early
Swedish cinema. Although remarking upon the films of Brunius, Stiller and Sjöström not having had been distributed to large audiences, as were the films of Ernst Lubitsch (Passion) that had starred Pola Negri, author Lewis Jacobs writes, "Opposed to the artificiality of the German films in their stress on the real world of nature, the sea and the landscape, Swedish pictures were impressive for their simplicity, realism, sensitive acting and sincerity." Starring the actress Karin Molander, when reviewed in the
United States, the film was commended for its "unity of plot structure"
and for "all its dramatic elements (being) dramatically related, its
development (being) climactic and consitent.". Also in the film are Greta Almroth, Concordia Selander and Hilda Castegren in her first appearance on screen. The novel was in fact
filmed again in 1947 by Gustaf Edgren and in 1958 by Gustav Ucicky with title="Swedish Film Posters"
href="">Maria Emo
. Peter
Cowie has put the films of Finnish director Ruani Mollberg (Earth is a
Sinful Song
, Maa on syntinen laula, 1973) alongside the films
of Victor Sjöström and Mauritz Stiller, his writing, "His characters move
not against the backdrop of field and lake and forest, but deep within the
enveloping topography." To Bengt Forslund, Sjöström had found a
"descriptive visual language" which accounts for his collaboration with
Selma Lagerlof and her novels being particularly suited for adaptation.
Charles Magnusson in 1909 had hoped to film the novel The Wonderful
Journey of Nils Holgersson
, which Victor Sjöström had read with
enthusiasm. Allan Eyles notes that The Covered Wagon (James Cruze,
1923), filmed in the United States, was remarkable for its depicting the
relationships of the characters within narrative to the enviornment in
which the story takes places, its plotline built around the interaction of
its three primary characters.

Greta Garbo is quoted by Sven Broman as having said, "I know that he
courted Sarah Bernhardt and wanted to write plays for her...But Strindberg
still managed to get Sarah Bernhardt to do a guest performance in
Stockholm- in La Dame aux Camelias at the Royal Dramatic Theatre."
Mothers of France (1917) would be the last film which would feature The Divine Woman,
Sarah Bernhardt. Directing in 1912, Louis Mercanton had filmed Berhardt
for four reels using only long, static shots; there are twenty three
scenes in the film and of the twenty two intertitles, only three are
interpolated. Most summarize the dialougue and its consequence to the
action untill the exclamation in scene twenty one, "May God forgive you, I
never will." Of his having directed title="Greta Garbo-Silent Film"
href="">Greta Garbo
Sjöström had remarked after filming, "I and Metro's own scriptwriter,
Frances Marion, wrote the story eight times before it was accepted. By
that time nothing remained of the original material and every trace of the
divine Sarah had been obliterated."

J. Gordon Edwards in 1917 would direct Cleopatra (ten reels) and
Camille (six reels), written by Frances Marion, as well as
Salome (seven reels), The Rose of Blood (six reels), The
Forbidden Path
and Under the Yoke (five reels). Frank Powell
directed Heart of the Desert. A Modern Musketeer (five
reels), directed and written by Allan Dwan, starred Marjorie Drew and
Douglas Fairbanks. His first screen appearance had been in Bertie The
. Frances Marion that year also wrote the photoplay to the film
Temple of Dusk (James Young, five reels), her following it in 1919
with the scenarios to A Regular Girl (James Young, five reels),
The World and its Woman (Frank Lloyd, seven reels) and The
Cinema Murder
(George Baker, five reels). Lillian Gish in 1917 had
starred in the films The House Built Upon Sand (Ed Morrisey, five reels) with
Kate Bruce and Souls Triumphant (John G. O'Brien, five reels) with Wilfred

In addition to directing and starring with Gerda Thome-Mattsson and
Tollie Zellmann in For hem och hard, Swedish director Georg af
Klercker that year directed Mary Johnson in the films Revelj and The Suburban Vicar (Forstadprasten), in which she starred with Corcordia Selander and Lilly Graber. Actress Olga Hallgren appeared in two films directed by George Klerker, Brottmalsdomaren, with Gabriel Alw and the actor
George Blickingborg in his first appearance on screen and Ett konst narsode with Greta Pfeil, the assistant director to the film, Manne Göthson. For hem och
was photographed by Swedish cameraman Sven Pettersson,
Brottmalsdomaren by Swedish cameraman Gustav A Gustafson and Ett konst narsode, by Carl Gustav Florin. In 1918
Klercker directed The Lighthouse Keeper's Daughter (Fyrvaktarens
), Night Music (Nattliga toner), photographed by Gustav A Gustafson and starring Agda Helin, Helge Kihlberg and Tekla Sjöblom and Nobelpristagaren.

director George af Klerker is portrayed by the actor Bjorn Granath in the
film Jar ar Nyfiken film (Stig Björkman). The Last Scream, a
two character play in one act, depicts a fictional meeting between silent
film director George af Klerker and Charles Magnusson, founder of the
Swedish Film Institute, and was written by Ingmar Bergman. The play was
published by New Press in the volume The Fifth Act. And yet, the film Mysteriet natten till den 25ie prooves to be more enigmatic than its director. It stars Swedish actress Mary Johnson and Carl Barklind and was photographed by Sven Petersson- it was not shown to audiences untill 1975.

Konrad Tollroth in 1917 directed and starred with Lili Bech in
The Bird of Paradise (Paradisfageln), directed and starred with Lisa Hakansson-Taube in
Sig egen slav and directed and starred with Greta Almroth in
Allt hamnar sig. That year he also directed Edith Erastoff in the
film Chanson triste and Greta Almroth and Jenny Tschemichin-Larsson
in the film Miljonarvet, and Karin Molander in the film Vem
. Egil Eide both directed and starred with Edith Erastoff in the
films Every Man Forges his own Happiness (Envar sin egen lyckas smed) and Mrs. Bonnet's Slip (Fru Bonnets felsteg),
which also starred Karin Molander. F. Magnussen that year wrote and
directed the films Jungeldrottingens smyke, photographed by Henrik
Jaenzon and starring William Larsson, Den levande mumien,
photographed by Hugo Edlund and starring William Larsson and
The Secret of the Inn (Vardshusets hemlighet), starring Edith Erastoff.

1917 was to mark the first publication written by the Swedish author title="Swedish Authors"
href="">Swedish author
Agnes von
Krusenstjerna, the volume Nina's Dagbook.

In Denmark, in 1917, Gunnar Tolnaes and Lilly Jacobsson were teamed for the first of two films, The Maharaja's Favorite Wife (Mahatadjahen's Yndlings Hustru), directed by Robert Dinesen and written by Sven Gade. Director August Blom was to direct both Tolnaes and Jacobsson in the 1919 film The Maharaja's Favorite Wife 2 (Mahatadjahen's Yndling Hustru 2). Carl Th. Dyeyer wrote the screenplays to two films directed by Holger-Madsen in 1917, Fangre Nr. 113 and Hans vigrige Kone.

In 1918, Thomas Ince left the Triangle Motion Picture to form Thomas H. Ince Studios. One silent short that had belonged to Blackhawk Films, was a tour of the studios filmed by Hunt Stromberg between 1920-1922. An intertitle from Blackhawk Films reads, "Insisting upon strict adherence to complete shootingscripts, Ince supervised the direction and editing of each picture and thus managed to give all the appearance of having been directed by Thomas H. Ince, regardless of who did actually direct." The short, sent to exhibitors, shows footage of Ince viewing the rushes from the previous afternoon.

After Hearts of the World (1918, twelve reels), Griffith
followed with The Great Love (1918, seven reels) for Famous Lasky
Players, it starring Lillian Gish, Robert Harron and Rosemary Theby and
with The Greatest Thing in Life (1918, seven reels), starring
Lillian Gish, Robert Harron and Kate Bruce. In Hearts of the World,
during a scene in which soldiers are marching, he used reverse direction
cutting, which he had briefly used in A Girl and Her Trust (1912).
Matching the screen direction when the camera cut had often preserved
continuity in early silent cinema. Part of Sjöström's directing included
placing objects in an anglular relation to the camera. He reversed the
direction of the character's profile when cutting back between full shots
and close ups of the same shot and cut ins of the exterior landscape in
the use of varying camera distance, the size of the object within the
frame of each shot, the composition within the rectangle of the frame,
also varying, it becoming "a screen technique of close up and cutback to
clarify plot movement, intensify emotional content" (Ramsaye). The
dramatic interest is as though fastened to the character, the attention of
the spectator directed to him or her within the relation of each shot to
the shots that are subsequent to them, composition decided upon in
accordance with editing; an element of the scene could be included in the
interest of the scene by the director with each decision as to where to
position the camera. It may often be that character interest can be
enhanced by thematic meaning and its processes, as something that is
reiterated at different junctures of events and as a background to the
developing relationships between characters, their interactions, it being
that thematic meaning, within narrative, is enacted. It is not only
landscape that can provide a backdrop that will develop the atmosphere
within a film, but there is also the script, mood advanced with and by
plotline, the character bringing unity to the narrative. In that both are
elemnts of composition, the use of nature as a background and mise-en
scene are part and parcel of each other, subject positioning being not
only that characters interact not only with the spectator but also with
mise en scene reflecting that spatial temporality is the interplay between
mise en scene and the film's characters, characters that move into the
space seperating the objects in the film, characters that move in front of
and behind objects within the frame, characters that inhabit the space in
which they are seen. If narrative organization could be provided by the
use of mise en scene, mise en scene that would include within the spatial
arrangement of composition the figure of the character within subject
positioning, narrative clarity could be provided by the use of camera
positions and the editorial devices of technique. There is a unique use of
reverse direction in the opening sequences of F. W. Murnau's film
Sunrise (nine reels) where the screen direction of adjacent shots
is reversed while being incorporated into the montage, the montage effect,
of the sequence.

During Orphans of the Storm, Griffith reverses the screen
direction of close shots during a dialouge scene by inserting a shot of
the absent title="Lillian Gish-D.W.Griffith"
. After a dialouge intertitle of it being announced that the
character is to marry a Princess of the Blood, Griffith cuts from a close
shot in profile of the character facing the left edge of the frame to an
interpolated shot of Gish as his beloved and object of his reverie, her
facing the left edge of the frame, the camera then cutting back to the
conversation and original close shot of his facing the left edge of the
frame, Griffith reversing the screen direction while both are in close
shot. In effect, the shot functions as disruptive-associative montage, the
shots linked thematicly by their placement in the sequence. It very well
could be that the use of spatial discontinuity, the cutting to a different
location during the scene, harkens back to the cinema of attractions and
the use of brief static shots for effect, a single shot with its own
aesthetic value included into the narrative as being seperate, editing and
camera placement articulating the erotic as thematic within narrative
through the use of the eroticism of display. When seen by Norwegian director Tancred Ibsen, Orphans of the Storm was one of the films included in his decision to go to Hollywood, albeit none of the scripts he wrote while there were realized.

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