Both Brian Selznick’s The Invention of Hugo Cabret (2007) and Martin Scorsese’s Hugo (2011) have done a lot to reintroduce “cinemagician” Georges Meliès to an entirely new audience, especially to his ground breaking masterpiece Le Voyage dans la Lune (A Trip to the Moon). The science-fiction short was originally released in 1902 both as a black-and-white and as a hand-coloured print.
Only black-and-white copies were thought to have survived, until a coloured roll reappeared in Barcelona in 1993. Restoration work was completed in 2011, and the silent film was re-released with an original soundtrack by French electro-pop duo Air.
With the visual trickery, the bright Technicolor treatment, and now the vintage prog-rock synths of tracks like “Sonic Armada”, the psychedelic adventure of A Trip to the Moon still packs a punch, 110 years after its original release. Following the widespread critical acclaim of Air’s new score at cinema festivals around the world, all the tracks for the 15mn film were subsequently expanded into a full length album – Le Voyage dans la Lune – released in February 2012.