Paris Qui Dort (The Crazy Ray)

Year: 1923

Production: Films Diamant

Director: Rene Clair

Starring: Henri Rollan, Albert Prejean, Madeleine Rodrigue, Marcel Vallee

Screenwriter: Rene Clair

60 minutes; B/W

This is one of the earliest sf films (other than shorts). A scientist accidentally freezes Paris into a split-second of time with an invisible ray. Some Parisians escape, through being either on the Eiffel tower or in a plane. Most of them take advantage of the situation to break out of their social roles, have drunken parties, etc., but a young nightwatchman persuades a group to seek out the source of the problem and put it right, which they do (though at first the victims can move only in slow motion). Made with style and charm by Clair - whose first film it was - Paris Qui Dort retains its wit and good humor when seen today.

The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction

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