Entr’acte (1924), Rene Clair
Entr’acte means a pause between two parts of a stage production, like an intermission, but it more often indicates a piece of music performed between acts. In films meant to be shown with an intermission, there was frequently a specially recorded entr’acte on the soundtrack between the first and second half. Rene Clair’s surrealist short Entr’acte premiered in 1924 as an entr’acte for Francis Picabia’s ballet Relâche. Produced by the dance company Les Ballets Suis it features the members mourning the loss of their star dancer, Borlin. Outrageously surreal and silly, it offers such sights as a funeral procession with the hearse being pulled by a camel and the dead occupant giving a final performance and uses such techniques as people running in slow motion, things happening in reverse, a ballet dancer filmed from underneath, an egg getting shot and becoming a bird and people disappearing. The cast included Picabia, Satie, Man Ray, and Marcel Duchamp.