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26 June1924
The Fist Marriage
Famiglia D'Ambrogi
Music by Erik Satie

Of these wedding scenes, dated 24 June 1924 and filmed with a Pathé Baby camera, we know little. It is undoubtedly one of the first wedding films (and one of the first family films) made with the revolutionary 9.5mm format, made in France. The film and the camera have been available since 1923, an absolute novelty. The two reels, obviously silent, are spliced one behind the other and show as many one-minute scenes each with the newlyweds D'Ambrogi coming out. Until 1927, the camera is a hand crank and therefore it is only possible to film by fixing it on a tripod: movements are limited and jerky. With the spring-loaded camera from 1927 things changed and it was possible to film with the camera in hand and moving in space.

The first scene is the classic exit from the church, an unidentified church in Rome (one memory shows San Martino ai Monti Esquilino, but not so easily recognisable). The bride and groom emerge, visibly excited, with relatives and friends. Waiting for them are cars. The groom's name is Francesco D'Ambrogi (1893-1975): he is young, limps with a cane, and wears a medal. He is a veteran of the First World War, a volunteer in 1915, but he lost his leg later, in a tram accident in 1922, the cause of the postponement of the wedding and indirectly of this film since it would not have been possible to make it before. Francesco, a company executive, married Maria Argenti (1893-1978), a housewife. Together they will have seven children. The second scene takes place outside the Hotel Boston in Rome, located near Porta Pia, where the wedding lunch was held. Here too, the scene is filmed outside, in natural light. We again see the guests on their way out, with the bride and groom. The author of the film is one of the many emulators of the Lumière brothers. After all, what better way to make a moving portrait? In this case, we are dealing with an important moment of a wealthy family that at that time could afford a souvenir film for future memory. The living testimony of these images comes from Patrizio D'Ambrogi (1940), the last of the couple's seven children.