Georges Méliès : À la conquête du pôle – The Conquest of the Pole ( mit deutschen untertiteln)

Prerecorded: DissonART ensemble & Kreutzer Quartet
Music and Sound Design: Spiros Deligiannopoulos

About the film: At an International Congress at an Aero Club, explorers from around the world argue about the best way to fly to the North Pole.All are in disagreement until the congress’s president, the engineer Maboul of France, explains his plans for an “Aero-Bus,” an airplane with a passenger car and a huge figurehead in the shape of a bird head. The proceedings are interrupted by a group of militant suffragettes, who announce their intention to go to the Pole themselves. When they have been chased off, the Congress nominates an international group of experts to accompany Maboul to the Pole: Run-Ever of England, Bluff-“Allo”-Bill of America, Choukroutman of Germany, Cerveza of Spain, Tching-Tchun of China, and Ka-Ko-Ku of Japan. Maboul takes his colleagues to his office to study the model of his invention, and then to the electricity-powered factory where the real thing is being constructed. The leader of the suffragettes moves on with her own plans to get to the Pole, building a machine fitted with propellers and a multitude of toy balloons, but it fails to get off the ground.

The completed Aero-Bus lifts off to great acclaim, though it meets with two difficulties; first the suffragette leader tries to board with the expedition at the last moment, and then the explorer Tching-Tchun, arriving late, is accidentally left behind. The race to the Pole attracts many other adventurers, who depart in their own machines; soon the sky is full of aircraft of every shape and size. Both Tching-Tchun and the suffragette leader attempt to make it to the Pole in a balloon, but again meet with failure. (The explorer falls a short distance to the ground and gives up; the suffragette, having held on longer, falls onto a church steeple and explodes.) Meanwhile, the Aero-Bus continues through the sky unimpeded, passing various planets and constellations.

The aircraft skims down over the ice of the Arctic and finally crash-lands. The delegates make it out of the wreck, safe and sound. Almost immediately, however, they run into an obstacle: the Giant of the Snows, a pipe-smoking, man-eating frost giant who has to be scared off with cannon fire. They come at last to the pole proper, where they find a huge magnetic needle. Stuck by magnetic attraction to the needle, which breaks under their weight and plunges them into the icy waters, they signal for help and are picked up by a passing airship. Penguins, seals, and Arctic birds wave goodbye. The explorers return in triumph to the Aero Club, where they bow to all assembled.

Μουσική: Σπύρος Δεληγιαννόπουλος

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Category: Multimedia
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