Starico + Gameplay.it
Life of an American Fireman
Life of an American Fireman picture

Life of an American Fireman

Life of an American Fireman

In 1903, Edwin S. Porter filmed the rescue of a woman and her daughter from a burning building. The life of an American Fireman (1902), clearly inspired to Fire! by James Williamson, introduces the brilliant insights of the British director in the United States, broadening his discourse.

As his colleague overseas, Porter shows us, thanks to the help of the editing, two different spatial points of view: from the street and from inside the house, but also a compendium of cinematic techniques of the time, such as close-ups (the detail of the hand activates the alarm) and dissolves, as well as meticulous directing skills.

To increase the pathos and add further drama to the action, Porter opts for an alternation between reality and fiction, opening the film with the scene of a premonitory dream (using the double exposure technique developed by Georges Méliès) , shooting the scenes in the studio and in outdoor, and trying to give more dynamism to the action.