The Time Travellers Of 1908 is a home-movie about London in the 21st Century made by two explorers from 1908.
Using a time-machine shaped like a movie camera, they visit the structures of 21st Century London which capture their imagination. They visit the London Eye, Canary Wharf and the Docklands Light Railway, as well as places they recognise from their own time, such as Whitehall and Trafalgar Square.
Finally returning to 1908, they take an unexpected gift to show their families...
It was shot entirely on original Edwardian hand-cranked 35mm cameras with antique English Cooke lenses. The soundtrack recorded on a 1909 Edison phonograph. Shooting on period equipment creates an authentic Edwardian film 'look' and a sense of shock for viewers when we see present-day London in a film that looks a century old.
The Time Travellers Of 1908 was made with completion funding from the City Of Westminster Arts Council and Film London.
A piece I assembled from late 19th Century American films of dancers performing the Butterfly Dance set to a piece of modern music, which work uncannily well together.
Dancers: Annabelle Whitford Moore and Crissie Sheridan
Camera: W.K.L Dickson, William Heise, James White and others for Edison Manufacturing Co. 1894-1897.
Music: Moth In The Flame Of Carnality by Mikey Georgeson & The Civilised Scene. Used with permission. pop-z.com/
Assembled by Martin Pickles, 2014
Century's End is a film-poem about London in the last hours of the 20th century.
It was shot between midday and midnight on 31st December 1999 and includes the exact moment of the beginning of the year 2000. The music is by Flotation Toy Warning.
I shot it in black and white at 16 fps and telecine-ed it at 25 fps in order to give it the jerky look of an old Edwardian film. This creates a deliberate tension between the antique look of the film and the recognisably modern setting.
The film starts with Trafalgar Square and The Mall - views which have scarcely changed in decades - before moving on to the ultra-modern Docklands redevelopment around Canary Wharf, which resembles the set from Fritz Lang's Metropolis. From there we move to the South Bank with its Sixties and Seventies 'Brutalist' architecture to find it swamped by people, whose sheer numbers suggest the anticipated visitation of a prophet. We see the London Eye, the quintessential icon of the New Millennium in London, bathed in lasers and almost eclipsing Big Ben, an icon of old London. The film ends on the moment of the beginning of the new century and the image is blotted out by fireworks.
Promoted by: The British Council, Film and Literature Department, 10 Spring Gardens, London SW1A 2BN Tel. +44 20 7930 8466
Directed and edited by Martin Pickles
Camera by Martin Pickles and Ian Samels
Camera supervision by Ian Samels
Music ('Fire Engine On Fire') by Flotation Toy Warning
16mm telecine by Lux
Thanks to Ian Samels, Brian Marshall of Rapid Pictures and Vicky West of Flotation Toy Warning
An Edwardian gentleman is tormented by spirits who appear through holes in his sitting-room wall paper. The film was fully-funded by the London Production Fund 2001.
'G.M.' was inspired by the work of magician and film pioneer Georges Melies (1861-1938), whose most famous film - 'Le Voyage Dans La Lune' - was exactly one hundred years old in 2001. The film was made possible by a grant from the London Production Fund with additional funding from Portable Whole.
The first moving pictures made in England were of the South side of Trafalgar Square in 1890 and shot by Wordsworth Donisthorpe. This clip dissolves from Donisthorpe's view in 1890 to the identical view in 2003.
The 2003 shoot was directed by me and shot by John Adderley on a hand-cranked Williamson Paragon Cinematograph.