A film building the basis for Star Wars, The Matrix, Jurassic Park, and Avatar is often left out. The film is "The Birth of a Nation" from 1915. While the film is widely regarded as a masterpiece of technical filmmaking and storytelling, it is also notorious for its deeply problematic themes.
The film's technical achievements were groundbreaking for the time, including its use of close-ups, cross-cutting, and parallel editing. Having in mind that The first World War was raging across the ocean, let's us have a thought of how ahead of its time the film was.
It was a commercial and critical success, grossing over $10 million at the box office. For that time, it was a huge sum.
The film's impact on cinema cannot be overstated. It established many of the narrative and technical conventions of modern filmmaking, such as the use of flashback, parallel editing, and the creation of epic, sprawling stories.
Overall, "The Birth of a Nation" is a film that changed the course of cinema forever, both for its technical achievements and its controversial content. Its legacy serves as a reminder of the power of film to both reflect and shape society's beliefs and values.