What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

Open, general discussion of silent films, personalities and history.
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wich2

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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostMon Jan 23, 2017 10:46 pm

>The dialog titles -- and there were lots of them for a short made in 1911 -- ran along the bottom of the frame<

Sounds like an attempt to look like a newspaper strip.
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostTue Jan 24, 2017 4:44 am

Quite right, Charlie, the series continues for a few more days. I meant to say that, having seen all the shows, it's over for me.

Thanks for adding your assessment to Mutt & Jeff at the Opera.

Bob
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earlytalkiebuffRob

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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostTue Jan 24, 2017 1:55 pm

Almost gave up on MIDNIGHT MADNESS (1928) due to its presentation, which was a recording of a live screening. I suspect the print wasn't too clever in any case, so glad I persevered as it was an entertaining example of what would later be called the 'rom-com'. Jacqueline Logan plays a secretary who is reduced to living in a dump behind a shooting gallery, and is lumbered with a ne'er-do-well souse of a pa. One of the office's clients is a wealthy diamond miner, played by Clive Brook, and her boss is a louse who has been leading her on. Brook is attracted to her and a marriage is decided upon. When he overhears that she is really interested in his money, he decides to teach her a lesson...

Travelling back to Africa, Logan is dismayed that they are travelling second-class. She is further horrified by their primitive transport and living conditions. Things then take a more serious turn when the ex-boss turns up, with a drunken, lecherous foreman in tow, announcing that he had a nearby claim. An agreeable romantic comedy becomes quite dramatic and violent in parts.

Directed by the mysterious-sounding F Harmon Weight, and released by Pathe, MIDNIGHT MADNESS is an amusing trifle, with Brook sending up his stuffy Englishman rather nicely. For some reason, one doesn't find out what happened to Logan's Pop, although he seems to have snuffed it at his last sighting.

THE NERVOUS WRECK (1926) is a straight version of the story which was musicalised in WHOOPEE! and UP IN ARMS (1944). This one has Harrison Ford as the hypochondriac and the lovely Phyllis Haver as the rancher's daughter who takes a shine to him. Although Ford is well cast in the role, I found it became particularly tiresome after a while. The plot differs quite a lot in places to WHOOPEE, with not an Indian to be seen and one can see why it seemed like a good candidate to add songs and Technicolor to. Not to say there isn't the odd pleasant or amusing moment, but these become very thin on the ground towards the end. Whether or not this would improve with an audience one can only guess.
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostWed Jan 25, 2017 4:36 pm

Although I've had it for months, I finally got around to watching "Insel der Seligen" (Isle of the Blessed), 1913, directed by Max Reinhardt. It is a remarkable and strange film by a great theater director. I had known, of course, of his 1935 Hollywood extravaganza of "A Midsummer Night's Dream" , but I hadn't realized he had directed a few silents, as well. I found this on Youtube,

and it isn't a terrific print. However, it is watchable, and it is fun. On the island, there are a whole gaggle of "Greek" gods and nymphs, etc, and they play havoc with some young people and their pompous fathers who come out to visit the island. Worth a look.
Last edited by silentfilm on Thu Jan 26, 2017 12:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Embedded YouTube link
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostThu Jan 26, 2017 2:33 pm

Finally got to see WILD AND WOOLLY (1917), a highly entertaining, if at times non-pc outing for Douglas Fairbanks. In this one, Doug plays a Wild -West obsessed young man stuck in a tedious office job with his father. The chance of a work trip to Arizona fires his enthusiasm, and the businessmen waiting for him are amused that he imagines the West is as it was in 1880. Egged on by the hotel-keeper's daughter, the townsfolk decide to recreate their town as the young man would seem to imagine it, and an elaborate trick is set in motion. What they don't realise is that a local agent, who has been exploiting the Indians, has plans to turn the stunt to his benefit...

Although some of the portrayals of the local natives as drunken, trigger-happy, simple-minded and easily-led might jar with a modern audience, WILD AND WOOLLY remains a fresh and entertaining piece of fun, even though Doug seems a bit old for the naive young man. The film moves at a lively clip and is generally very funny until it takes a more serious turn in the last quarter. The last part (which includes a staged holdup) is slightly odd in that the timescale doesn't seem quite right. Oh, and Doug's love interest, Eileen Percy, gives a very lively, spunky, performance.
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostSat Jan 28, 2017 2:02 pm

Unfortunately shortened, MY LADY OF WHIMS (1925) has Clara Bow as the younger daughter of a respectable family who is trying to become a writer in Greenwich Village. Down-on-his-luck ex-soldier Donald Keith has the job of winkling her out, and is assisted by buddy Lee Moran (who had 477 film roles as well as directing 100+).

A lightweight programmer for which Bow is the only real reason to watch it, although her room-mate, played by Carmelita Gergharty is enjoyable, too. Clara is being courted by a moustachioed rat as well as being chased by a wealthy old fart old enough to be her grandpa. Intermittently amusing, it does give us the sight of Clara in a most spectacularly revealing dress which will have the gentlemen falling off their sofas in astonishment and is a highlight of the film,
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostMon Jan 30, 2017 5:52 pm

I'm re-watching Kino's presentation of 140 Edison pioneering shorts and remaining features with just as much appreciation as when I watched them the first time. 8)
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostTue Jan 31, 2017 4:18 pm

The Brothers Karamazov (1921)
This film version of the Dostoevsky novel by director Carl Froelich has a great cast but is far from a great movie. Obviously, any cinematic adaptation of the story-and this is especially true of a silent- is going find it near impossible to tackle Dostoevsky’s themes of good, evil and faith. Stripped of the writer’s philosophy, what you have left is a somewhat sordid tale of a dirty old man vying with his hot tempered, dissolute son for the love of a prostitute. The film does follow the plot of the book’s second half very closely though much is omitted.
Old Karamazov is played-somewhat surprisingly-by Fritz Kortner sporting a walrus moustache and an imposing wig. A slim and dashing Emil Jannings portrays Dmitri, Papa’s rival for Grushenka (the not terribly attractive Alina Gryficz-Mielewska). The other Karamazov boys are the saintly monk Alexi (Hermann Thimig), the dour intellectual Ivan (played by the dour Bernhard Goetzke ) and the bastard son Smerdyakov ( a very creepy performance by Werner Krauss). Also in the mix is the noblewoman Katia (Hanne Ralph, once married to Emil Jannings) who loves Dmitri but ends up betraying him.
The somewhat dark print that I watched was very episodic. choppy and disjointed; many of the scenes are too brief to build up any dramatic tension. Smerdyakov’s admiration for Ivan-which sets the final tragedy in motion-is not sufficiently emphasized to explain his motives. The copy has homemade English titles but it’s likely to be confusing if you’re not familiar with the story.
Russian actor/director Dimitri Buchowetski is listed as “artistic advisor” and has a small part in the film. Carl Froelich’s brother Hugo has a brief role as the Karamazov family servant. In 1931, Fritz Kortner would play Dmitri in a much more fluid and cinematic version of the story, “The Murderer Dmitri Karamazov.”
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earlytalkiebuffRob

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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostThu Feb 02, 2017 3:17 pm

Despite not even rating a mention in the index of his autobiography, Frank Capra's THE POWER OF THE PRESS (1928), though a little lightweight, has a number of his favourite themes present, such as his interest in the newspaper business / process, plus political corruption. This one has Douglas Fairbanks Jr as a young staff member out for his big break. He gets it (despite the odd mishap) when the local D.A. is murdered and the litter-strewn office is all but deserted. Losing his press card, he spots a young lady (Jobyna Ralston) sneaking out of the house, and is informed by one of the villains (Wheeler Oakman) that she is the daughter of a local politician running for office.

The pair of them soon find themselves involved with crooked politicians, bootleggers and a lady of loose morals, played by Mildred Harris. A lively yarn, entertaining as well as interesting, despite a somewhat worn copy, with a brief missing bit near the end. Good humoured, with a serious thread and a dose of romance.
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostFri Feb 03, 2017 8:37 pm

The Michigan Kid (1928) was pretty dreary Rex Beach Yukon stuff until the finale, which was pretty good despite the garish tinting. I have no idea where I got this copy. Seemed like an odd mix of rear projection and real stunts (not by the stars) as the canoe carrying the stars races down the river away from a blazing forest fire but toward a falls. Anyway, Conrad Nagel, Renee Adoree, and Lloyd Whitlock probably all made worse films.
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Saint-Just

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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostMon Feb 06, 2017 4:38 pm

I've been sampling All Day's Becoming Charley Chase set - way too much Snark Ensemble.
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostWed Feb 08, 2017 9:55 am

We just watched "Das Liebes A-B-C", 1916, Magnus Stifer, director. This one of the films on the "Vier Filme mit Asta Nielsen" compilation put out by the edition filmmuseum, from the Filmmuseum München. A silly, frothy film that show Asta's pleasure in playing a "Hosenrolle". She and her financé go off to Paris, where she wants to make him a real man. She dresses as a man, and they go out on the town. The girls they meet are more interested in her than in him, she drinks too much, and discovers it's harder to be a "real man" than she thought. Then her father comes to fetch her, and she tries to play the young man again. He sees through it, teams up with her fiancé to fool her and make her jealous. Fun, if predictable. Beautiful print and good score. Well worth it,
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostWed Feb 08, 2017 10:17 pm

My wife and daughter are both sick so they were in bed early tonight. I had to stuff diapers (we use cloth) and I figured I may as well work on the backlog.

During a sale a week or two ago Wagon Tracks was quite cheap on Amazon Prime. I've never really seen much William S. Hart and I'm not a huge western fan (though I do love me some Have Gun will Travel.) The film did impress me, and I'm really glad I picked it up. I don't think Olive released many more silents but I hope they do (despite this being the barest of bare bones release.) At least the price was more than fair! (I paid around $11)
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostWed Feb 08, 2017 10:19 pm

sepiatone wrote:I'm re-watching Kino's presentation of 140 Edison pioneering shorts and remaining features with just as much appreciation as when I watched them the first time. 8)


My brother owns that set and it's boxed away somewhere. I'd love to borrow it from him to watch it again.
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostSat Feb 11, 2017 10:03 am

I finally watched Evangeline 1929 which I had planned to watch for the movie night.Life sorta got in the way of me finding time so I finally MADE time and I am glad that I did!! Starring Delores del Rio it is a beautiful print with tints and most of the original Vitaphone sound. A fine example of late silent cinema. I hope that the rest of the sound discs are discovered some day!
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostSat Feb 11, 2017 8:25 pm

Had a go at The Chechahcos, the 1924 meller about Alaskan gold rush miners who adopt an 'orphan' girl when their ship sinks. The story is strictly by the numbers but it was fascinating seeing this made-on-location film that wasn't that far removed from the real gold rush. Some interesting (and appalling) scenes showing early mining techniques plus the apparently first film of Denali. Alexis B. Luce is good as the baddie and is apparently his "one and done" role, more's the pity.

This edition also had a very nice piano score, albeit uncredited in the copy I saw.
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostSun Feb 12, 2017 2:45 pm

I Lifvets Vår (1912), offered as The Springtime of Life, though the meaning is more like "In Our Life." Headliners are Victor Sjöström, Selma Wiklund af Klercker, and Mauritz Stiller. Directed by Paul Garbagni. Simple tale of the travails of a young lass with a mysterious origin. Dedicated and mostly naturalistic acting by all concerned, with some splendid photography (credited to Julius Jaenzon), particularly that involved with a theater fire. Stiller is particularly memorable in his role as a handsome cad. Worth a look or two for students of Swedish film; pleasant but perhaps not compelling for others.
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"She confessed subsequently to Cottard that she found me remarkably enthusiastic; he replied that I was too emotional, that I needed sedatives, and that I ought to take up knitting." —Marcel Proust (Cities of the Plain).
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostSun Feb 12, 2017 5:45 pm

the four survivng reels of Dante's Inferno 1924. Here Ralph Lewis starts the picture(as he does many) sitting at a desk. What's with Ralph and desks? I generally liked the imagery in this, I'm accustomed to the stills from this movie, but seeing the running film it's interesting to see what Henry Otto (the director) was trying to achieve. If possible this film could use a restoration but I don't know with reels missing or what not. The hell scenes certainly remind one of the great crowd scenes in Intolerance and DeMille's The Ten Commandments.
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostMon Feb 13, 2017 7:06 pm

Havsgamar (1915), which is to say Vultures of the Coast. Directed by Victor Sjöström; starring Richard Lund (in numerous early Swedish films; but some may best remember him as the shady abortion “doctor” in 1935’s Valborgsmässoafton alias Walpurgis Night), Rasmus Rasmussen, Greta Almroth, John Ekman (To Joy, The Phantom Carriage, The Outlaw and his Wife, etc.). Drama of smuggling, murder, and fate on the wild and rocky coast of Sweden, gaining in intensity as it goes along. Ingmar Bergman, a great admirer of Sjöström, nevertheless was not so sure about Sjöström’s tendency towards a certain amplitude in emotional moments in S.’s films (though Bergman eventually came around). Though director Sjöström does not appear in this film, his directorial hand can be seen clearly, and to good effect, in some of the actors’ “big” moments here, most especially with the emotionally damaged son of the smuggler. As usual in this era, we have no close-ups but rather a succession of medium shots, always well composed and often beautiful. In one case, Sjöström’s inventiveness is shown when the camera tracks to one side, revealing what is happening on the opposite side of a wall as the screen becomes split between two rooms. A fine, taut, film.
_____
"She confessed subsequently to Cottard that she found me remarkably enthusiastic; he replied that I was too emotional, that I needed sedatives, and that I ought to take up knitting." —Marcel Proust (Cities of the Plain).
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostWed Feb 15, 2017 1:44 pm

I thought I added my most recent films but I guess not:

3 Bad Men: If John Ford knew how to do one thing, it was westerns. This one was definitely great. My wife gave me this on BD for my birthday, though I see it's really cheap on DVD in the Ford at Fox collection. I may double dip just to get the other silents.

The End of the World: This was definitely more mellerdrammer but I found it enjoyable. Some of the special effects were quite good, considering when it was made. Obviously it's a commentary on how all of Europe was blowing itself up by that point. Well worth seeing!

A Trip to Mars: Now this was a hoot! Not just because the scifi is quaint by today's standards but how idealistic the whole thing was. Still, it's a nice little space opera. I find it funny that Denmark didn't make another scifi film until what is perhaps the most (in)famous Danish film ever was made in 1962: Reptilicus!
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostWed Feb 15, 2017 3:15 pm

earlytalkiebuffRob wrote:Unfortunately shortened, MY LADY OF WHIMS (1925) ... does give us the sight of Clara in a most spectacularly revealing dress which will have the gentlemen falling off their sofas in astonishment and is a highlight of the film


Why, whatever do you mean?

Image

Ah, uh, OK....move along, nothing to see here...
Twinkletoes wrote:Oh, ya big blister!
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostThu Feb 16, 2017 1:46 pm

earlytalkiebuffRob wrote:Almost gave up on MIDNIGHT MADNESS (1928) due to its presentation, which was a recording of a live screening...


Sorry you watched that version---a much better one is available online:
https://www.filmpreservation.org/preserved-films/screening-room/midnight-madness-1928
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostSat Feb 18, 2017 3:46 pm

What amazes me constantly with silent cinema is how they got so much out of a story written on the back of a tram ticket. "Die Frau nach der man sich sehnt" (1929) ("The Woman One Longs For") is one such prime example. It's the tale of a nincompoop of a man who is on the way to being married who chances to see this woman at a railway station and next minute he is on her train pursuing her. Does this happen in real life? Anyway Oskar Sima is the love-struck dimwit and Marlene Dietrich - before she was "Falling in Love Again", is the ravishing beauty. (Well I suppose she does scrub up rather well).

Turns out Marlene has a bit of form as she gives out this air of a mysterious past. She is travelling with a rather sinister fellow with a monocled eye (Fritz Kortner) who definitely gives the impression that he has something to hide. On the train she meets up with the dimwit and asks him to save her from this fellow and can he meet her and rescue her at an alpine hotel?

Well we get to to the hotel and then all the shenanigans really start to happen - mostly at a wild New Year's party. It's all a bit predictable - we know it's not going to end well, and it doesn't.

I couldn't help but think that the director, Kurt Bernhardt, was going for the Garbo cool, calculating and evil type she played in a few pictures as Marlene reminded me of her. The rest of the assembly give a good account of themselves with Kortner excelling as the bad apple of the bunch - and loving every minute of it.

Not a world-beater of a picture. It does have its moments where it sags, but sufficiently interesting to hold one's attention long enough to get through it all.

The orchestra playing the film started off quite well and then lost the plot half-way through. I suppose I just hate it when obvious cues are missed.
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostSat Feb 18, 2017 4:46 pm

I had the feeling that I had seen a story very much like "Au Bonheur des Dames" (1930) ("Paradise for Women") as everything was quite familiar and then it came to me that "The Paradise", a BBC television series, was based on the same Emile Zola novel.

This is the story of an orphaned girl who goes to live with her Uncle who runs a small, dusty and decrepit haberdashery shop just over the road from a huge departmental store which is taking business away from all the small businesses in its vicinity.

To earn her keep the girl goes to work at the big store. In the beginning she is chased around the counters by the personnel officer who employed her until eventually the big boss lays his eyes on her and is smitten.

This is a story of contrasts. On one hand we can see how the rich live and how the girl has opportunity. On the other hand we see the poor and the tragedies of ordinary, everyday life. The girl has to make choices - whether she opts for a good life or she remains loyal to her uncle and family. We also get to see how people are manipulated and there is a lot of that going on in this picture. The telling of the main tale, with little offshoots from the main theme round out the film and embellish it so that it accomplishes a great deal in its standard ninety minutes playing time.

There is nothing that is superfluous in this film and the casting is excellent. Dita Parlo plays the girl in a very sympathetic manner. She is teamed with an excellent cast including names I am not familiar with. The settings are wonderful and I believe the departmental store scenes were photographed in "Galleries Lafayette".

The direction is by Julien Duvivier who has proven himself over and over again as a master of the film medium. He uses the camera well and gives a wonderful sense of movement in scenes that require it. He also successfully combines a tinge of expressionism and "noir" giving a foretaste of what is yet to come in his later films.

The print I watched was excellent and the orchestral accompaniment suited the mood beautifully.
Regards from
Donald Binks

"I was in love with a beautiful blonde one time. She led me to drink. It's the only thing I'm thankful to her for."
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostSun Feb 19, 2017 6:54 am

The Picture of Dorian Gray. Thanhouser. 1915
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostSun Feb 19, 2017 11:06 am

Marked Money (1928) caught the interest of my 2 elementary age kids, and it is tough to get them interested in adventure silent films let alone anything that is not animated.

Good to see Mark Hamilton appear at the beginning of the film portraying "old mariner Bill" that turns an orphaned boy and his inheritance over to a lawyer so that the boy could be adopted. At last the old stills I have of him in seafaring costumes match the attire he wore in this film. His part in the film is enough to put him in the credits, but guess the studio (Pathe') at that time did not feel his part was worth crediting.
Mark Hamilton (I) is on imdb.com
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostMon Feb 20, 2017 2:14 pm

Ingmarsönerna (considering the sweep of the story, I’d name the film in English something like “Estate of the Ingmars”), 1919, directed by Victor Sjöström, starring Sjöström and Harriet Bosse (Bosse was August Strindberg’s last wife). A remarkable and touching film based on a novel by Selma Lagerlöf (writer of many novels on which movies have been based, such as Gösta Berling’s Saga, The Phantom Carriage, Sir Arne’s Treasure). The unique beginning will leave you wondering just where this is going!—but it’s not only a framing device but also, one reflects afterwards, organic to the simple plot. In rural Sweden of a past century—and part of my pleasure in the film is in seeing the accuracy with which this rural social environment is depicted—a man gets married. That’s the plot! But what we are concerned with here is the development of the feelings of the principals, and their anguish. Sjöström gives us the stoic torment of a common man out of his depth in a trying situation. Bosse gives one of the most subtle and extraordinary performances I’ve seen in any film in any age of a woman in the grip of deep emotions which she cannot express (the more you understand Swedes and the Swedish ethos, the more natural this situation will seem). If at the end you don’t have at least the hint of a tear in one corner of your eye, as well as perhaps a wry smile on your lips, then you officially qualify as a Monster, and should register as such with your local authorities. A beautiful, enriching, fully satisfying film.

I have not read the novel, and may be wrong in my conjecture; but it seems to me that the movie has only hinted in the most subtle way (unless I happened to miss something!) a plot point which, if I’m right, adds a good deal to the show’s poignancy. As this is only incidental to the main thrust of matters, I don’t believe that it will spoil anything for me to float the suggestion, for you to bear in mind when you watch the film, that the baby’s father is actually the mother’s old childhood friend (whom we meet momentarily early in the film, if not for this purpose, then needlessly). See if you don’t think so too!
_____
"She confessed subsequently to Cottard that she found me remarkably enthusiastic; he replied that I was too emotional, that I needed sedatives, and that I ought to take up knitting." —Marcel Proust (Cities of the Plain).
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earlytalkiebuffRob

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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostTue Feb 21, 2017 2:00 pm

IA wrote:
earlytalkiebuffRob wrote:Almost gave up on MIDNIGHT MADNESS (1928) due to its presentation, which was a recording of a live screening...


Sorry you watched that version---a much better one is available online:
https://www.filmpreservation.org/preserved-films/screening-room/midnight-madness-1928


Indeed it looks lovely, so will need to watch again. And no apology needed, it was my choice as wasn't sure if a better one would turn up.
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostTue Feb 21, 2017 2:07 pm

Having foolishly watched SUCKER MONEY (1933) to the end, I needed a bit of light relief, and CATALINA, HERE I COME (1927) was pleasant, if silly. Eddie Quillan works at a cafe and has eyes for gum-chewing Madeline Hurlock, who unfortunately has agreed to marry boss Andy Clyde. Enter glamorous opportunist Alma Bennett, and Clyde's eyes are elsewhere... Add a plot about the Catalina swimming race, and there you have it, documentary footage and all. The film is a sponsored one after a fashion, as the race was organised by Wrigley's of chewing-gum fame, and there is a little light advertising thrown in. Nothing great, but quite funny at times and interesting to watch one of Eddie's earliest appearances.
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Re: What's The Last Silent Movie You Watched? [2017]

PostTue Feb 21, 2017 2:10 pm

Donald Binks wrote:I had the feeling that I had seen a story very much like "Au Bonheur des Dames" (1930) ("Paradise for Women") as everything was quite familiar and then it came to me that "The Paradise", a BBC television series, was based on the same Emile Zola novel.

This is the story of an orphaned girl who goes to live with her Uncle who runs a small, dusty and decrepit haberdashery shop just over the road from a huge departmental store which is taking business away from all the small businesses in its vicinity.

To earn her keep the girl goes to work at the big store. In the beginning she is chased around the counters by the personnel officer who employed her until eventually the big boss lays his eyes on her and is smitten.

This is a story of contrasts. On one hand we can see how the rich live and how the girl has opportunity. On the other hand we see the poor and the tragedies of ordinary, everyday life. The girl has to make choices - whether she opts for a good life or she remains loyal to her uncle and family. We also get to see how people are manipulated and there is a lot of that going on in this picture. The telling of the main tale, with little offshoots from the main theme round out the film and embellish it so that it accomplishes a great deal in its standard ninety minutes playing time.

There is nothing that is superfluous in this film and the casting is excellent. Dita Parlo plays the girl in a very sympathetic manner. She is teamed with an excellent cast including names I am not familiar with. The settings are wonderful and I believe the departmental store scenes were photographed in "Galleries Lafayette".

The direction is by Julien Duvivier who has proven himself over and over again as a master of the film medium. He uses the camera well and gives a wonderful sense of movement in scenes that require it. He also successfully combines a tinge of expressionism and "noir" giving a foretaste of what is yet to come in his later films.

The print I watched was excellent and the orchestral accompaniment suited the mood beautifully.


It seems that Duvivier made a sound version of this film in 1930, which appears to be lost. There was another filming in the early 1940s with Albert Prejean.
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