Forgotten Silver (1997)




Critic Consensus: This mockumentary about a non-existent New Zealand film pioneer and inventor features fake interviews and recreated archive footage that are so effective that many viewers were stunned to learn it wasn't real.

Movie Info

This elaborate New Zealand farce is a chronicle of forgotten international cinema pioneer Colin McKenzie, a New Zealand native born in 1888. The filmmakers spice up the documentary with interviews with such film celebrities as Leonard Maltin, Harvey Weinstein, and Sam Neill. They also include footage from McKenzie's surviving films.
Art House & International , Comedy , Documentary
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
New Zealand Film Commission


Sam Neill
as Himself
Thomas Robins
as Colin McKenzie
Leonard Maltin
as Himself
John O'Shea
as Himself
Peter Corrigan
as Stan the Man
Jeffrey Thomas
as Narrator
Costa Botes
as Himself
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Forgotten Silver

Critic Reviews for Forgotten Silver

All Critics (10) | Top Critics (2)

The sly joke of Forgotten Silver really registers.

December 31, 1999
The New Republic
Top Critic

a funny mockumentary of a legend that never was

January 29, 2008

Quite aside from being perhaps the most elaborate prank in Jackson's career to date (or since), Forgotten Silver is a brilliant piece of moviemaking.

Full Review… | April 8, 2007

Clever mockumentary.

April 24, 2003
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

An uncanny deadpan take on the typical PBS or A&E biography.

Full Review… | June 5, 2002
Boxoffice Magazine

It will surely be as elusive to find in the video stores as any of the fake late genius' work, but if you can see it, do see it.

June 14, 2001

Audience Reviews for Forgotten Silver

Cleverly written and executed, but I was surprised at how unfunny it was. Not in the sense of *failed* humor, but of humor not being attempted at all. The funniest thing about the film is its overall premise -- chuckles during individual scenes were scarce for me. The steam-driven camera, the egg heist, the all-Chinese talkie, a character named Alexandra Nevsky, Harvey Weinstein's casual shrug at the end about cutting an hour from the fictional movie.... Not much else. The difference between "Forgotten Silver" and "This Is Spinal Tap" is that the latter would be just as funny, even if were true. I can't say the same for "Forgotten Silver." It's certainly worth seeing, however. Note: The film is about 52 minutes, not an *hour* and 52 minutes. The length stated above is wrong.

Eric Broome
Eric Broome

Super Reviewer

Fantastic mockumentary.

Tim Salmons
Tim Salmons

Super Reviewer

A rather funny mockumentary about Colin McKenzie, a man who (apparently) rivalled DW Griffiths, the Lumiere brothers, Edison, and George Melies in the early days of film. he supposedly invented the bicycle cam (and subsequently crashed it), made film emulsion from eggs (though it took a dozen to make one minute worth of film), and captured the first flight on celluloid nine months before the Wright Bros. ever flew! Of course, none of this really happened, but apparently some viewers thought that it did, and it got Jackson in a bit of hot water with the New Zealand Film Commission. This film's worth a look.

Buddy A
Buddy A

Super Reviewer

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