Bataille de neige (1897)
Director: Louis Lumière
Synopsis: Wintertime in Lyons. About a dozen people, men and women, are having a snowball fight in the middle of a tree-lined street.
In the Lumières’ 1897 movie Bataille de neige, what convincingly appears to be a spontaneous snowball fight involving men, women and children from all classes is in all probability a staged event (the likelihood of a wandering cameraman stumbling upon such a scene is highly unlikely) but it is still extremely enjoyable and lent an element of slapstick by the hapless cyclist who must beat a hasty and undignified retreat after wandering into the midst of the fight only to find himself unseated by a barrage of snowballs. The film has a terrific sense of liveliness and fun thanks to the obvious pleasure of the participants of the fight. And let’s face it; who amongst us doesn’t enjoy a good snowball fight?
(Reviewed 1st August 2014)