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March of the Movies (1933)

The Film Parade (original title)
A two-reel short from Alliance (produced in England and not the USA as some sources indicate)covering the history of "moving pictures" from 1848 to the (then) present, and even going into ... See full summary »


J. Stuart Blackton


Howard Gaye




Credited cast:
Kent Stevenson Kent Stevenson ... Narrator
Marian Constance Blackton Marian Constance Blackton ... Woman in Garden in Camera Obscura Scene / Participant - Battle of Manila Bay recreation / Actress in 'His Sister's Beau'
Violet Virginia Blackton Violet Virginia Blackton ... Woman in Garden in Camera Obscura Scene
Marjorie Bonner Marjorie Bonner ... Woman at Daguerre's Studio
J. Stuart Blackton Jr. J. Stuart Blackton Jr. ... Man at Daguerre's Studio / Actor in 'His Sister's Beau'
J. Stuart Blackton ... Participant - Battle of Manila Bay recreation
Albert E. Smith ... Participant - Battle of Manila Bay recreation
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Charles Chaplin ... Himself (film clip from 'The Champion' (1915)) (archive footage) (as Charlie Chaplin)
Marlene Dietrich ... Herself (film clip from 'Der Blaue Engel") (archive footage)
Tom Mix ... Himself (film clip from 'The Stagecoach' Guard (1915)) (archive footage)


A two-reel short from Alliance (produced in England and not the USA as some sources indicate)covering the history of "moving pictures" from 1848 to the (then) present, and even going into detail about how stationary frames of pictures are made to move, and how Sound is put onto the track. Footage from many silent films is used, including Mary Pickford (identified as Gladys Nicholson) in 1910's "Simple Charity", and Camille's death scene from "La Dame aux cemelias" in which Sarah Bernhardt dies standing on her feet (possibly to ensure the other performers didn't upstage her) and takes her own sweet time doing it. Marlene Dietrich sings "Falling in Love Again" from the English version of "The Blue Angel", which is good as the German-language title of that song is tough to write on a keyboard that has no accent marks. This short's title was changed to "March of the Movies" in the USA, which makes more sense than what most of the US film titles were changed to in England. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis









Release Date:

21 December 1933 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

March of the Movies See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Alliance Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


(original) | (re-release)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Though many fiction and documentary films had already been produced showing film making process, this is considered to be the first film to cover the history of movies. See more »


Falling in Love Again
Written by Friedrich Hollaender
Sung by Marlene Dietrich (footage from The Blue Angel)
See more »

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User Reviews

2 August 2018 | by bobliptonSee all my reviews

Forty years after he was in charge of Edison's project to make a working motion picture camera, J. Stuart Blackton was credited as director of this movie. I have no doubt that legal action was threatened at some stage; this two-reel short tells the now-standard history of the movies from the American perspective, which is pretty odd for a movie produced in Great Britain. There it was well known that several other competing inventors came up with the camera at the same time or even before Edison. However, the producers undoubtedly had hopes of distributing this film in the US, and why tell the Yanks something they would know to be a lie? You might as well tell them that the light bulb was invented by Joseph Swan in 1860.

As a statement of the standard hagiography of the movies it does a pretty good job, although it departs from the standard as claiming that the talkies hit in 1928. I suspect that the first British movie palace wasn't wired for sound until that year., so that the important people couldn't enjoy Al Jolson unless they had seen him in person. How self-centered some people are!

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