world realize that the art of the motion picture is really an art. It had drawn its subject matter from national sources, thus giving an example which the Russians were to follow. Rather too much history, too many picturesque costumes and too much literature gave their films, admittedly, an over romantic air. But a real effort to express thought and feeling led the Scandinavians at the same time also into overstressing technical devices which occasionally prove wearisome, and into an excess of morality which is prone to become disagreeable.
For all that, in The Outlaw and His Wife, in The Stroke of Midnight, The Treasure of Arne, Gunnar Hedes Saga and The Burning Mill they showed us how to attain a poetical quality which even today is still captivating. Snowy wastes and simple hearts were brought together in these skillful features in a manner both astounding and deeply moving. No one before them had shown us nature itself, and natural backgrounds, as part of man's very existence;* there was something here very different from the films of the French landscape school like Baroncelli's or Léon Poirier's. Though the Swedish film was to decline, its teaching would not be lost. Its influence was to be detected in many a film to come, even inadequate ones, and we shall always remember, rather wistfully, that Sweden was the country that first revealed the visual and emotional beauties of the screen.
WHEN the last gun had boomed over No Man's Land Germany was to remain familiar with the noise of machine guns and hand grenades for some time to come, even for years. The German film was born of war and revolution. Fortunately, there are some industries and some forms of human activity which can proceed heedless of riots and disorders; among them are banking and munition making. The German film, luckily, was in the hands of____________________