4.6/10
175
4 user 1 critic

The Burglar on the Roof (1898)

Not Rated | | Short, Crime | September 1898 (USA)
There is a burglar on the rooftop of a Manhattan office building, and he is trying to break in. Two women spot him, and one of them begins beating him with a broom as they wait for help to ... See full summary »

Director:

J. Stuart Blackton
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Cast

Credited cast:
J. Stuart Blackton ... The Burglar
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Storyline

There is a burglar on the rooftop of a Manhattan office building, and he is trying to break in. Two women spot him, and one of them begins beating him with a broom as they wait for help to arrive. Soon others do appear on the scene to help, but by now the burglar has decided that he is going to put up a fight in an attempt to escape. Written by Snow Leopard

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Plot Keywords:

roof | broom | women | burglar | See All (4) »

Genres:

Short | Crime

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

September 1898 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Silent
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This short was filmed on the roof of a building where Vitagraph had rented an office. The wife of the building's janitor, not realizing a movie was being shot, spotted J. Stuart Blackton dressed as a burglar and began attacking him with a broom, thinking he was an actual burglar. See more »

Connections

Featured in Edison: The Invention of the Movies (2005) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Before the Chase
6 September 2018 | by bobliptonSee all my reviews

There's a burglar on the roof, lifting things through the skylight. Two women begin beating him with brooms, then a man comes and begins to attack him.

This Edison short is attributed to Blackton. There's another movie by the same title that was released by Vitagraph two months earlier. A common method of "remaking" a film before the production companies began placing their logos in the scenery, making them trademarked -- they would not be copyrightable until the laws were changed about a decade and a half later -- was to buy a print, then simply copy it.

This movie cries out for a chase sequence, but the immobile camera and lack of editing made that impossible at this stage of the movies. All action had to take place within the carefully delineated frame of the camera.


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