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What is Forty-Niners?

Forty-Niners is a western composed of five sequences that illustrate stories of the conquest of the West. The movie considers dust as the only character in his stories. The narrative is suggested by the shapes of the clouds of particles and by the sounds.

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Project Genesis

In the Wild West, dust is omnipresent: it rises when convoys pass, it swirls in the wind, and it gets inside adobe buildings. In the 1910s, filmmakers employed tricks to reduce the amount of dust blowing around on film sets. Less dusty, these new westerns looked stripped of the authenticity of western weather conditions, the same conditions that had motivated production studios to move to California as early as 1907.

Technical Specifications

Movie duration: 15min 50s

Color: black and white, color

Aspect ratio: standard format (1,33 :1), original cinemascope (2,55 :1)


Movie: Tanguy Benoit, Julia Pelichet

Poster and intertitles: Thomas Yaël Lopes

Photographs: Tanguy Benoit