The 'Melies touch'? : magic, myth and the man in the moon

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Doyle, Ali
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BA (Hons) in Film Studies
Dublin Business School
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December 8 2011, marked the 150th birthday of Georges Méliès, and it appears that seventy-four years after his death and the unfortunate turn his career took, that Georges Méliès is once again at the forefront of the film industry. As Elizabeth Ezra writes: 3 | ‘ T h e M é l i è s T o u c h ’ Although a product of his era- Méliès was heavily influenced by his origins in the magic theatre- his films were innovative and responsible for anticipating and influencing every major current of film-making in the twentieth century. Méliès has been at the centre of important debates about the development of cinematic form and style, and his work has provoked both adoration and disdain. Some dismiss him as naive, [...] an idea of the complexity – and modernity – of his work. With this in mind, I aim to take an in-depth look at the life and work of Georges Méliès focusing on his 1902 masterpiece Le Voyages Dans La Lune as this has the iconic image of the man in the moon, which is a prevalent image in the history of cinema and the world’s contemporary popular culture. Author keywords: Méliès, voyage, moon, silent film, air, science fiction, magic, illusion, transformation, gunning, theatre, spectacle, novelty, tricks