Intolerance. 1916. USA. Written and directed by D. W. Griffith. With Robert Harron, Lillian Gish, Marguerite Marsh. 35mm. Silent, with musical accompaniment. 173 min.
“The film Intolerance is of extreme importance in the history of the cinema. It is the end and justification of that whole school of American cinematography based on the terse cutting and disjunctive assembly of lengths of film, which began with The Great Train Robbery and culminated in The Birth of a Nation and in this. All the old and many new technical devises are employed in it—brief, enormous close-ups not only of faces but of hands and of objects; the eye-opener focus to introduce vast panoramas; the use of only part of the screen’s area for certain shots; camera angles and tracking shots such as are commonly supposed to have been introduced by German producers years later; and rapid cross-cutting the like of which was not seen again until Potemkin.” This print represents the standard 1920s release version.