“The Policemen’s Little Run” An Early Silent Film

“The Policemen’s Little Run”(1907) is one of many classic examples of the early silent films. At the time when the closest form of entertainment in terms of aesthetics were plays on stage. Where the actors were limited in their settings, and exaggerated their movements to ensure that those who may not be able to hear what they are saying may somewhat understand the intended message of a specific character. Moreover, we can see in the mise en scene of this early film that in comparison, the film’s actors are not limited in setting. Infact, the film utilizes the mobility of filmaking by incoporating the surroundings of the story throughout the whole film to tell a story. For example, the dog crawls into small gutters, down alleyways, around corners, and even up a basket. Also, with each obstacle the dog runs around, the policemen falter and stumble humorously. In other words, the surroundings change constantly and provide a tool by which the actual story is conveyed. Whereas before, surroundings were only meant to set the background to give off certain connotations, denotations and a sense of the passing of time and place, where minimal interaction of setting and actor took place on stage.

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