Gertie the Dinosaur (1914)
|Gertie peeks out.|
Someday I may still get to it, but in the meantime, here are my notes on subjects and questions that might reward future development:
— Pay tribute to a hundred years’ worth of changes to the exterior of the
of Natural History (contrast
today’s museum with a screen capture from 1914?). American Museum
— Illuminate those dark interiors of the
of Natural History to better
expose the museum! (Poor McCay was
hampered by a refusal from the museum staff to allow appropriate film
lighting.) American Museum
— Compare/contrast: From McCay’s personality animation of a mosquito in How a Mosquito Operates (1912) to the full-blown personality animation of Gertie.
|On command, Gertie lifts her foot,|
complete with animated shadow.
— What it would have been like to first-hand witness McCay’s vaudeville act with its lightning sketches? And what would it have been like to have been in one of the first audiences for Gertie the Dinosaur, with McCay snapping his whip???
— Speculate on the vaudeville musical accompaniment that would have added a third component to the multimedia production (film, live performance, and live music).
— Explore Gertie’s use of the screen as an extension of the vaudeville stage, with great depth of field (a lake extending into the distance).
— What kind of a dinosaur is Gertie? This question would naturally lead to an exploration of turn-of-the-century dinosaur representation.
— What kind of a sea serpent is in the water? This question would naturally lead to an exploration of turn-of-the-century sea serpent representation.
— Gertie as a toddler. Gertie with a diagnosis of ADHD.
— Gertie as a puppy.
— Gertie’s size, and the question of whether Gertie is treated to a pumpkin or an apple.
— The bizarre anatomy of the four-winged pterosaur.
— And Gertie’s eloquent tail—a charming example of McCay’s masterful ability to capture personality in subtle comic details.
|Gertie's very eloquent tail.|
© 2014 Lee Price