Biograph Shorts (Special Edition)

Directed by D. W. Griffith

Year: 1909
Running Time: 376
Color Type: Tinted B&W
Country: U.S.
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Biograph Shorts (Special Edition)

Crew
Composed by Jon C. Mirsalis and Robert Israel
Directed by D. W. Griffith


The selection of motion pictures featured in this two-disc set traces D. W. Griffith's rapid, unparalleled development as a filmmaker during his five year stint at the Biograph Company -- a development that contributed substantially to the emergence of film as a powerful form of cultural expression.

From the crude humor and melodramatic devices of The Adventures of Dollie (1908) through the remarkably dynamic The Battle at Elderbush Gulch (1913), one is able to witness Griffith's rapid gains in self-confidence and increasing command over the still new medium of motion pictures.

Griffith was noted for many achievements, but among his most striking was the use of parallel editing, both for purpose of suspense (An Unseen Enemy, The Lesser Evil) and to generate a powerful social commentary (Corner in Wheat, The Usurer). But, as The Unchanging Sea demonstrates, he was also able to harness the technique for more elegiac purposes. In these fifteen films -- plus eight bonus shorts -- one finds Griffith experimenting with (and thus contributing to the development of) various genres, including the Western (The Last Drop of Water), the crime picture (The Musketeers of Pig Alley), and the seafaring drama (Enoch Arden, one of Griffith's earliest two-reel endeavors).

Disc One contents:

  • Those Awful Hats (1909. 3 mins.)
  • The Sealed Room (1909. 11 mins.)
  • Corner in Wheat (1909. 14 mins.)
  • The Unchanging Sea (1910. 13 mins.)
  • His Trust (1911. 14 mins.)
  • The New York Hat (1912. 16 mins.)
  • An Unseen Enemy (1912. 15 mins.)
  • The Mothering Heart (1913. 23 mins.)
  • (bonus short) The Adventures of Dollie (1908. 12 mins.)
  • (bonus short) The Usurer (1910. 18 mins.)
  • (bonus short) Enoch Arden (1911. 33 mins.)
  • (bonus short) The Miser's Heart (1911. 16 mins.)

Disc Two contents:

  • The Musketeers of Pig Alley (1912. 18 mins.)
  • The Burglar's Dilemma (1912. 15 mins.)
  • The Sunbeam (1912. 15 mins.)
  • The Painted Lady (1912. 12 mins.)
  • One is Business, The Other Crime (1912. 15 mins.)
  • Death's Marathon (1913. 15 mins.)
  • The Battle at Elderbush Gulch (1913. 29 mins.)
  • (bonus short) The Last Drop of Water (1911. 13 mins.)
  • (bonus short) Friends (1912. 13 mins.)
  • (bonus short) The Lesser Evil (1912. 13 mins.)
  • (bonus short) The Massacre (1912. 30 mins.)
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