Partie d’écarté (1896)
Partie d’écarté (1897)
Director: Louis Lumière
Cast: Antoine Féraud, Antoine Lumière, Félicien Trewey
Synopsis: Two men play cards, as a third watches and a waiter brings drinks. The third man pours drinks as the waiter laughs.
A rather unpromising subject matter is made enjoyable in Partie d’écarté thanks to the interaction of the four characters within a narrow frame. The camera focuses on a card table – and it is one of only a few early films in which the immobility of the camera is not glaringly obvious – at which are seated three grand gentlemen, one of whom is the Lumière brothers’ father and the other Félicien Trewey, another pioneering figure in the birth of film. Two of the men play cards while another pours drinks as an attendant waiter looks on. Not a lot more happens, but the picture captures an atmosphere of relaxation also evident in Repas de bébé.
(Reviewed 28th May 2009)