Feb 28, 2013 at the Winnipeg Film Group Cinematheque
The Adventures of Prince Achmed
DIR. LOTTE REINIGER | 1926 | GERMANY | 65 MIN
Featuring a live score by Julia Ryckman and friends
A German animated fairytale film from 1926. It is the oldest surviving animated feature film; two earlier ones were made but they are considered lost. The film features a silhouette animation technique Reiniger had invented which involved manipulated cutouts made from cardboard and thin sheets of lead under a camera. The technique she used for the camera is similar to Wayang shadow puppets, though hers were animated frame by frame, not manipulated in live action. The original prints featured color tinting. Several famous avant-garde animators worked on this film with Lotte Reiniger. These included Walter Ruttmann, Berthold Bartosch, and Carl Koch.
Taken from The Arabian Nights, the film tells the story of a wicked sorcerer who tricks Prince Achmed into mounting a magical flying horse and sends the rider off on a flight to his death. But the prince foils the magician’s plan, and soars headlong into a series of wondrous adventures.
Julia Ryckman is a classically trained opera singer and piano player and is presently front-woman of post-punk rockers This Hisses, solo project Slattern, and experimental duo Triunfo Do Gato. She calls her new score “chamber punk", with one foot in the technical, demanding world of Opera and the other in the dirty punk rock bars of Winnipeg.