Tuesday, 28 August 2007

The Airship Destroyer

I heard out about this movie and did some online digging. Sadly though I havent been able to find a copy...yet!

The Airship Destroyer
(sometimes called Battle in the Clouds or The Aerial Torpedo),


Less than 10 minutes long and produced in 1909 by Charles Urban, an American pioneer of cinematic special effects working in Britain. It’s pretty prophetic stuff: airships bombing cities and railways, fighters intercepting them, radio-guided SAMs, even an armoured car thrown in for good measure. I would guess it was inspired in part by the phantom airship scare which took place earlier that year.

The following synopsis is taken from the Moving Picture World magazine:

Section 1. - preparation.
The Aero camp -Loading supplies - Start of the airships - The inventor of the airship destroyer - His love story - The parting - The alarm - The aero fleet in full flight - The aerial torpedo and its inventor.

Section 2. Attack.

In the clouds - Dropping like shells from the firing deck of an airship - the chase - High angle firing from a gun on an armored motor car - Total destruction of the car - Railway wrecked by the aerial fleet - Shelling the signal box - The heroic operator meets death at this post - The fight in the air - Airship versus aeroplane - Wreck of the aeroplane - The burning of a town by the aerial fleet - Thrilling rescue of his sweetheart by the inventor.

Section 3. Defense.

The inventor with the assistance of his sweetheart sends his airship destroyer on its mission of vengeance. The torpedo, steered through the air by wireless telegraphy - One flash and the airship is doomed - It falls, a mass of scorching fire, into the waters of a lake.

Sounds good eh?

There are also two sequels called: "The Aerial Anarchists" and "Pirates of 1920", both made in 1911, and I havent been able to find either of them. Let me know if you do!

5 comments:

Don M said...

No luck with those but found this...a bit outside our era but interesting none the less!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bz1f10RCOP4

Tas said...

What a great scene! I hadn't heard of this movie before - thanks Don :-D

Anonymous said...

found this:
http://www.screenonline.org.uk/film/id/1019305/index.html
has a link to video, but you have to be a school or something.
-GeneralissimoJ

Tas said...

Thanks Generalissimo, I guess we will have to keep looking...

zeb cook said...

The video is here: http://www.europafilmtreasures.eu/player.htm?ID=278

It's a German version, but with English subtitling.

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