This group has been enjoying themselves for 115 years, sitting outside on a lovely day, smoking their favorite pipes, playing cards, filling up thousands of glasses of wine from that single carafe and pretending not to notice their friend cranking the camera about 5 feet away. No one gets bored, drunk, or worries about work on Monday ever again. What a day!
I find these old clips fascinating. No one had thought to tell stories with film yet and so everything from the first few years of cinema is essentially documentary (and once they started telling stories all they really did was adapt Vaudeville at first). The colorization of this clip is interesting as well. Watch the color waver from frame to frame. At one point the woman is in black and white for a single frame.
The snippet is highly enjoyable. As it is a "slice of life", it is whimsical and shows its subjects engaged in that uniquely human joie de vivre. The painstaking hand-tinting of certain objects in the film can be contrasted to the carefree card party. Think of the patience and skill it took to tint not just the immobile vest, hats and dress, but the wine! The efforts and work of the hand that make life a joy!
Kadylady, there probably was no plot. The Lumieres were documentarians, so this was probably just a slice of life. What made this unusual and novel, I'm guessing, was the hand-tinting, which gives a fuller illusion of life. But I doubt this was the first film with that feature. Personally, I enjoy seeing images of a real moment (staged as it may be) from 113 years ago.