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KS2 English: '?' Motorist, The (1906)

A trick film is the starting point for a piece of imaginative writing

Main image of KS2 English: '?' Motorist, The (1906)
AuthorPoppy Simpson
Topic Preparing for a piece of imaginative writing
Curriculum linksNC English En1

An early 'trick film', in which a motorist goes to extraordinary lengths to evade the law, even to the point of interplanetary travel.

An early example of the use of special effects, The '?' Motorist is used here as the starting point for a piece of imaginative writing around the word 'fantasy'.



Watch the The '?' Motorist through as a class (you might wish play some lively music to accompany this short, silent film).

What are students' initial reactions? Do they have any questions? What adjectives would they use to describe the couple driving the car? What about the policeman?

Introduce the word 'fantasy'. Do students know what it means? What other words do they associate with the word? Offer them a basic definition of 'fantasy': something that has been imagined.

Now, encourage students to work in small groups of 3 or 4 to come up with an idea for a similar short film, which begins with a normal activity (such as a car driving down the road) but leads into something fantastical. You might wish to give students a list of possible ideas for the start of the film (ie. a man walking his dog/a child eating an ice-cream).

This short activity could form the basis of a lesson in which students develop their ideas into a piece of imaginative writing.


Some more ideas

  • Ask students to write a sentence explaining what they think the film is about. How do their various interpretations differ?
  • This trick film could also be used to explore the word 'illusion'. How can our eyes deceive us? What impact can illusions have?
Video Clips
Complete film (2:22)

Related Films and TV programmes

Thumbnail image of '?' Motorist, The (1906)'?' Motorist, The (1906)

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See also

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