The Lost Garden: The Life and Cinema of Alice Guy-Blache - a documentary
I was just made aware of a 1995 documentary The Lost Garden: The Life and Cinema of Alice Guy-Blache. Alice's name has been an obscure one to me, rarely mentioned in film history tomes, except in some cases only in passing. Her importance to film history and women in film history is vitally important. She can rightly be identified as the first woman film producer/director/writer.
This gentle film by Marquise LePage opens your eyes to the life and career of this cinema giant. I thoroughly enjoyed it last night. You can stream it from the link above, it is also available on DVD (and should be available in school and city libraries).
I only regret it was not a little bit longer. From the family archive of material hinted at and seen in passing with Alice Guy-Blache's granddaughter, it made the photo-maven in me itch with desire to see more. At the time this was made there were not so many of Alice's films extant or preserved. The film clips were not plentiful, but, enough to really whet your appetite. The use of reenactments were minimal. The scholars aka talking heads were few and charmingly dressed in vintage period costume to tell their sections of the story. At a brisk 53 minutes it covers all the basics and left me wanting more. This is a good thing.
If you want to see more of Alice Guy-Blache on DVD, you can start with KINO's set Pioneers: First Women Film Makers or on Flicker Alley's Early Women Filmmakers set (I need to get myself this set soon).
I am also looking to get several books so I can read up on Alice.