“The Cameraman’s Revenge,” One of the Earliest Stop-Motion Films
As of late, the world of animation has been governed by 3D films, like those of studios such as Pixar and Dreamworks, leaving other subsets like stop-motion a step behind. And while it’s true that Laika (Coraline, ParaNorman) is the only contemporary go-to example of this unique style of animation, this specific medium is way older and worthy of mainstream success than its current state may indicate. This is especially true when looking at its roots, a perfect example being Ladislaw Starevich’s The Cameraman’s Revenge.
Starevich was a Russian-French stop-motion animator and a true forefather of the medium as a whole. He worked mostly with puppets (being the first one to actually make a film using them) and insects, a fact made obvious in his short film The Cameraman’s Revenge. Filmed more than 100 years ago (1912), this short is a wry look at adultery and how it affects an insect marriage. Full of heart and a comedic feel, this short is still remembered as one of the greats that started it all for stop-motion.
The quality of the film is not the best (it won’t be in 1080p) but its importance lies in the innovative aspect of its premise and sometimes tedious construction. It has, though, stood the test of time, and even today can be seen as a monumental example of the unique capabilities of this strange filming technique.