Thoughts On: “A Trip To The Moon” (1902)

As the last post for REALLY Old Films Month, here’s an encore of a piece I originally wrote for Melies Month back in 2017. It seems fitting to end this exploration of early cinema with one of its biggest–and most charming–milestones!


You knew this one was coming! This is the final post for Méliès Month–I hope you enjoyed this extended tribute to one of the essential pioneers of the cinema!

Upward mount then! clearer, milder,

Robed in splendour far more bright!
Though my heart with grief throbs wilder,

Fraught with rapture is the night!

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, “To the Rising Full Moon,” 1828

For thousands of years mankind has gazed at the moon. Deities have been associated with it. We’ve written about it in poems and books, mentioned it in songs and plays, and painted and sculpted its likeness.

So perhaps it’s fitting that one of the earliest milestones of a brand-new artform should feature the elusive moon that’s so haunted our imaginations–a craggy, blinking, papier mache variety with seriously wicked eyebrows, that is.

A Trip to the Moon as You've Never Seen it Before | Arts & Culture|  Smithsonian Magazine

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4 thoughts on “Thoughts On: “A Trip To The Moon” (1902)

  1. Melies still retains such appeal for an early filmmaker. His aesthetic has a retro appeal now, particularly in his more genre-y works like A TRIP TO THE MOON. I always think of that one 1990s music video, “Tonight, Tonight” by Smashing Pumpkins– pure Melies.

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