Movie 11min

Joan of Arc (1900)


+ 23 images
Director Georges Méliès
Country France
Language French
(Original) Jeanne d'Arc
(Alternative) The Life and Martyrdom of Joan of Arc
15. Century Angels Based on True Story Biography Bishop Black and White Burned on a Stake Catholic Church Drama Hagiography Historical Drama Martyrdom Middle Ages Religious Conviction Roman Catholic Saint Short Silent Film St. Joan of Arc Vision War

Méliès 1900 version of the Joan of Arc story that was rediscovered in 1982 to when it was thought to be lost. What we have is a hand colored print with the first scene missing. The film was Méliès's second big cinematic success, after Cinderella. In this film, Joan enters heaven in the end as a saint suggesting her suitability for sainthood, although she was not beatified until 1909 and finally canonized in 1920. The film strongly emphasizes Joan's status as a national hero of France and a martyr for the French people. The Edison distribution of this move was a duped version, and it was also distributed by Siegmund Lubin and American Mutoscope & Biograph.

12 Tableaux
"A grand spectacular production in twelve scenes as follows:" (Edison catalog)
The Village of Domremy, Birthplace of Joan of Arc
"The Birthplace of Joan of Arc" (Edison catalog). This scene is missing from the film that survived.
The Forest of Domremy
"Scene in the Forest" (Edison catalog)
Joan of Arc's House at Domremy
"Joan of Arc's House" (Edison catalog)
Port of Vancouleurs
Castle of Bandricourt
Triumphal entry into Orleans
Coronation of Charles VII at Rheins
"Coronation of Charles VII" (Edison catalog)
Battle of Compiegne
Joan in Prison
"Joan of Arc in Prison" (Edison catalog)
The Interrogation in Torture Chambre
"The Interrogation" (Edison catalog)
Joan at the Stake - Market lace at Rouan
"The burning at the Stake" (Edison catalog)
"Tableau showing Joan of Arc mounting into space to take up her abode in heaven" (Edison catalog)
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Slow moving 11 minutes

Somehow Méliès made the story about Jeanne d'Arc a slow one to watch, even in the short timeframe. Maybe it was a film with lots of action for the day, but I found the scenes like the Orleans parade a bore although it was advertised as a big deal with over 500 persons in one scene(of course, the same actors was used over and over). There is also a very long battle scene that was more hilariously humorous than action-packed. A few moments do make a difference and that are extraordinary for the time. The first scene for instance, of Jeanne in the fields and an Angel appears is very beautiful. The burning at the stake was also quite exhilarating and memorable. In any way, there were a few previously made films about Joan of Arc, and of them, this is the most complete and show the life of Joan in twelve full scenes, focused on key moments of course. Definitely enjoyable.