Our New Errand Boy
R: James Williamson. D: Tom Williamson, James Williamson. P: Williamson Kinematograph Company. UK 1905
“Our New Errand Boy (1905) was directed by James Williamson, one of the ‘Brighton school’ of pioneers which also included G.A. Smith and Esmé Collings. Williamson had already distinguished himself as an innovator with his fake news item Attack on a China Mission (1901), which featured the first use of a cut for dramatic effect, and has been credited with the first edited chase sequence in Stop Thief! (1901) and, in Fire! (also 1901), the first film to use cutting to advance the narrative.
Our New Errand Boy is a relatively unambitious chase comedy, following a young horror whose wicked deeds include drenching the driver of a water cart, upsetting an old woman’s shopping and covering a curate with flour. Finally he manages to trap his furious pursuers in a hen run and escapes, laughing.
Errand Boy is one of a number of Williamson films featuring a mischievous child, played by the director’s son Tom, one of four Williamson children who frequently appeared in their father’s films. Williamson himself also appears as the grocer.”
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