Panorama Exterior Westinghouse Works (1904)
This early film shot from a moving train was filmed by Billy Bitzer, the German cameraman who would form a cinematically ground-breaking partnership with D. W. Griffith within a few years. Apparently the existing print is probably incorrectly spliced together so that the first half of the film is shown last. To be honest, it’s not really noticeable. Apart from the title. it’s only when the train slows up alongside the Westinghouse factory buildings that it becomes clear that we’ve been on a tour of the Westinghouse grounds and surrounding area. The film isn’t a panorama in the accepted sense of the word, but it is well filmed for the era, and although all we see is a lot of barren industrial land it’s still fairly interesting.
(Reviewed 17th July 2009)