The Silent Movie Day Blogathon – The Conquest of the Pole (1912)


This is a post dedicated to The Silent Movie Day Blogathon which is taking place today over at Silent-ology and at In the Good Old Days of Classic Hollywood

Tnx Lea and Crystal for letting me take part!

“The Secret of the North Pole: The Snow Giant – Title Card

Number of Times Seen – 1 (29 Sep 2021)

Brief Synopsis – A group of explorers set off on an adventure to find the North Pole.

My Take on it – This is a film that I came across by accident while doing research for this blogathon.

I have been a fan of Georges Méliès ever since I saw From the Earth to the Moon (1998) over 23 years ago and he was featured in the final episode.

Since then, I’ve seen a few of his film and each and every one of them truly fascinated me due to his innovation and style.

He was truly a pioneer in the field of film and special effects.

This film is his longest surviving film and it clocks in at slightly more than a half hour.

The story is very engaging and like A Trip to the Moon (1902), he takes a group of scholars and professors on an unforgettable journey which is inspired by a Jules Verne story.

The film starts with a debate between the scholars as to what mode of transport is best suited for their journey.

After making their choice, they give us a list of the 8 explorers chosen to take this journey which is multi national and filled with some pretty funny names similar to some famous people like Bluffalo Bill (instead of Buffalo Bill).

The film then takes us on their journey, but also allows the viewers to see the fate of the other groups of explorers ho wish to use different modes of transport to reach their destination.

The film also adds some social commentary into things with the addition of Suffragettes who wish to be a part of their historic adventure.

Once they reach their destination, Méliès once again proves how innovative his effects were as they need to fight off a Snow Giant and the magnetism of the North Pole.

This film is so much ahead of it’s time and was quite enjoyable to finally watch.

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – The film takes part of its inspiration from contemporary affairs surrounding the competing claims of Robert E. Peary and Frederick Cook over who had first reached the North Pole. Peary claimed he had reached the North Pole on 6 April 1909, however Cook, claimed he had done so a year earlier, on 21 April 1908. Méliès is quoted as saying that he thought both had pretended to have reached the North Pole, so he decided he was going to go there. (From IMDB)

Rating – Oscar Worthy (9/10)

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7 thoughts on “The Silent Movie Day Blogathon – The Conquest of the Pole (1912)

  1. Pingback: The Silent Movie Day Blogathon | Silent-ology

  2. Melies is also one of my favourite. I am always surprised too by his talent. Unfortunately we lost most of his work (only +/- 80 films out of 350 joined us) because he burnt all the originals he had in 1925. Hopefully each of his film had 2 original copies (in order to export his films to the USA without paying huge taxes).

    Like

  3. Pingback: MovieRob Monthly Roundup – September 2021 | MovieRob

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