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Friday, October 20, 2017

Lena Horne - The Duke is Tops (1938) Paul Robeson - The Emperor Jones (1933)







Lena Horne - The Duke is Tops (1938)

The Duke Is Tops is a 1938 American musical film released by Million Dollar Productions and directed by William Nolte. The film was later released in 1943 under the title The Bronze Venus, with Lena Horne given top billing. The film was one of a number of low-budgeted musicals (or "race movies") made in the 1930s and 1940s for the African-American market. The casts and production teams of these films were almost all black, and the music reflected current tastes in jazz and rhythm and blues.

The Duke Is Tops features the film debut of singer Lena Horne, then just 20, who had yet to develop the smooth, classy style she would distinguish herself with in her later films for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. Notably, Horne has a major acting role in this film, something that save for 1943's Cabin in the Sky and a few later films, she would rarely enjoy. The original top billed star, Ralph Cooper, was host of Amateur Night at the Apollo Theatre for 50 years. He also served as the movie's production manager.



Paul Robeson - The Emperor Jones (1933)

The Emperor Jones is a 1933 American pre-Code film adaptation of the Eugene O'Neill play of the same title, was made outside of the Hollywood studio system, financed with private money from neophyte wealthy producers, and directed by iconoclast Dudley Murphy, who had sought O'Neill's permission to film the play since its 1924 production in New York. He cast Paul Robeson in his first film role, Dudley Digges, Frank H. Wilson, and Fredi Washington. The screenplay was written by DuBose Heyward and filmed at Kaufman Astoria Studios with the beach scene shot at Jones beach Long Beach, New York. Robeson starred in the O'Neill play on stage, both in the United States and England, a role that had helped launch his career.

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Friday, October 13, 2017

Nancy Carroll in The Dance of Life (1929) MAE MURRAY in Peacock Alley (1930)



 





Peacock Alley is a 1930 American musical romantic drama film directed by Marcel de Sano, and starring Mae Murray and George Barraud.

The film is a remake of the 1922 silent film of the same name in which Murray also stars. Aside from Murray being cast in the lead, the remake was largely different from the 1922 silent film. While Murray's character in the 1922 film was named Cleo, she was renamed Claire Tree in this film. George Barraud replaced Monte Blue as the male lead, who is now named Clayton Stoddard.

The film was shot in black-and-white except for a two-color Technicolor sequence in which Murray tangos and impersonates both a toreador and a bull.  No color print survives; lost.

Produced by Tiffany Pictures, the film was lavishly produced with elaborate sets despite its low budget. Murray's silent films had been very successful and she and Bob Leonard had been founding members of Tiffany. However, by the time this remake was produced Murray's marriage to Leonard had come to an end as had the fortunes of Tiffany Pictures.

The film was intended to be a comeback vehicle for Murray as her career had declined after she was unofficially blacklisted by Louis B. Mayer after she walked out on her MGM contract in 1927. Unlike the silent version, the sound remake of Peacock Alley did not boost Murray's career and earned mostly unfavorable reviews

Photoplay called the film "a sorry affair" and Murray's performance "more affected and more bee-stung of mouth than ever. You'll laugh at the drama and weep over the comedy."

Murray alleged that Tiffany Pictures' crew had damaged her career by way of their technical incompetence displayed throughout the film. Because of this, she attempted to sue the company for $1,750,000, but was unsuccessful.





The Dance of Life (1929) is the first of three film adaptations of the popular Broadway play Burlesque, the others being Swing High, Swing Low (1937) and When My Baby Smiles at Me (1948).

The Dance of Life was shot at Paramount's Astoria Studios in Astoria, Queens, and included Technicolor sequences, directed by John Cromwell and A. Edward Sutherland.

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Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Clara Bow in Kid Boots (1926) & Get Your Man (1927)


Kid Boots is a 1926 American silent feature film directed by Frank Tuttle, and based on the 1923 musical written by William Anthony McGuire and Otto Harbach. This was entertainer Eddie Cantor's first film. Co-star Clara Bow.


Get Your Man is an American silent motion picture produced by Paramount Famous Lasky Corporation, and released in 1927. The film was directed by Dorothy Arzner and stars Clara Bow, Charles 'Buddy' Rogers and Josef Swickard.

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Saturday, October 7, 2017

Häxan: The Witches or Witchcraft Through the Ages, Nosferatu: A Symphony of Horror (1922)



Häxan (Danish title: Heksen; English title: The Witches or Witchcraft Through the Ages) is a 1922 Swedish-Danish documentary-style silent horror film written and directed by Benjamin Christensen. Based partly on Christensen's study of the Malleus Maleficarum, a 15th-century German guide for inquisitors, Häxan is a study of how superstition and the misunderstanding of diseases and mental illness could lead to the hysteria of the witch-hunts.

The film was made as a documentary but contains dramatised sequences that are comparable to horror films.

With Christensen's meticulous recreation of medieval scenes and the lengthy production period, the film was the most expensive Scandinavian silent film ever made, costing nearly two million Swedish kronor.

Although it won acclaim in Denmark and Sweden, the film was banned in the United States and heavily censored in other countries for what were considered at that time graphic depictions of torture, nudity, and sexual perversion. It is now considered to be Christensen's finest work.






Nosferatu, eine Symphonie des Grauens (translated as Nosferatu: A Symphony of Horror; or simply Nosferatu) is a 1922 German Expressionist horror film, directed by F. W. Murnau, starring Max Schreck as the vampire Count Orlok. The film, shot in 1921 and released in 1922, was an unauthorized adaptation of Bram Stoker's Dracula (1897). Various names and other details were changed from the novel: for instance, "vampire" became "Nosferatu" and "Count Dracula" became "Count Orlok".

Stoker's heirs sued over the adaptation, and a court ruling ordered that all copies of the film be destroyed. However, a few prints of Nosferatu survived, and the film came to be regarded as an influential masterpiece of cinema.

The film was released in the United States on 3 June 1929, seven years after its original premiere in Germany.

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Stories of Jesus Christ - 3 Silent Film Classics - 2 DVDs


DVD 1
Passion of the Christ (1903)Vie et Passion du Christ (Life and Passion of the Christ) is a 44-minute French silent film that was produced and released in 1903. As such, it is one of the earliest feature-length narrative films.

The film, with sequences made in the stencil color process Pathéchrome, takes a straightforward approach to its subject matter. All scenes are introduced by an inter-title giving the traditional name of the event (the Annunciation, the Nativity, etc.) followed by the actors playing out the familiar stories from the Gospels. Other than the scene titles, there are no other inter-titles.

In 1932, the film was re-issued in the U.S., distributed on a states-rights basis. Instead of the stencil coloring effect, however, the film was printed on red-tinted stock, with a musical score by James C. Bradford.

Its original French title was La Vie et la passion de Jésus Christ (The Life and the passion of Jesus Christ).




From the Manger to the Cross (1912)
From the Manger to the Cross or Jesus of Nazareth is a 1912 American motion picture that was filmed on location in Palestine.  It tells the story of Jesus' life. Directed by Sidney Olcott who also appeared in the film, actress and screenwriter Gene Gauntier wrote the script and portrayed the Virgin Mary.

The film received excellent reviews at the time of its original release. After Vitagraph Studios acquired Kalem, the film was re-released in February 1919.





DVD 2
Christus (1916)
Christus (Italian title Cristo ) is a 1916 film directed by Giulio Antamoro .

In it the life of Christ , from the Annunciation to the Transfiguration , is animated and developed through a succession of cinematic tableaux where we recognize famous works, including the Annunciation of the Blessed Angelic , The Nativity of Correggio , the Ultima Leonardo's Supper , Michelangelo's Pietà , Raffaello's Transfiguration .

The film was mostly filmed in Egypt . Many film scenes were shot at Cori .

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Friday, September 15, 2017

My Blood Runs Cold (1965) Troy Donahue, Joey Heatherton; What Ever Happened to Aunt Alice (1969) Geraldine Page, Ruth Gordon







My Blood Runs Cold (1965) Troy Donahue & Joey Heatherton

My Blood Runs Cold is a 1965 American film starring Troy Donahue with Joey Heatherton as his love interest. It was directed by William Conrad. It was the second of three thrillers Conrad made for Warner Bros.

A young woman falls in love with a man who may be insane. The young man, Ben Gunther, believes he and the young woman, Julie Merriday, are the reincarnations of lovers from an earlier time. Ben convinces Julie of his beliefs and encourages her to run off with him.

The movie was a considerable change of pace for Donahue. It was shot on the Monterey Peninsula in late 1964.




What Ever Happened to Aunt Alice (1969)

What Ever Happened to Aunt Alice? is a 1969 American thriller film directed by Lee H. Katzin with Bernard Girard (uncredited).

Starring Geraldine Page, Ruth Gordon, Rosemary Forsyth, Robert Fuller and Mildred Dunnock.

The screenplay by Theodore Apstein, based on the novel The Forbidden Garden by Ursula Curtiss, focuses on an aging Arizona widow who hires elderly female housekeepers and cons them out of their money before murdering them.

The music score was by Gerald Fried and the cinematography by Joseph F. Biroc. The film was funded by American Broadcasting Company (ABC), Palomar Pictures Corporation, and The Associates & Aldrich Company, and distributed by Cinerama Releasing Corporation.

The film is the third in a trilogy of Robert Aldrich-produced films (following What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1962) and Hush… Hush, Sweet Charlotte (1964) to feature two female leads. He directed the first two. All three films dealt with aged women who become scheming or demented, resorting to violence and murder.

It was shot on location in Tucson, Arizona, as well as at Aldrich Studios in Los Angeles, California

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Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Baby Peggy Montgomery - only living silent film STAR!







(1922 Magazine)

Captain January is a 1924 silent film featuring child star Baby Peggy. It was the first screen adaptation of the 1891 children's book Captain January by Laura E. Richards. With Baby Peggy &  Hobart Bosworth, Irene Rich



The Family Secret is a 1924 American silent drama film directed by William A. Seiter and featuring child star Baby Peggy. It is based on Editha's Burglar, a story by Frances Hodgson Burnett first published in 1881 by St. Nicholas Magazine and adapted for the stage by Augustus E. Thomas.  with Baby Peggy & Gladys Hulette, Frank Currier.
 


April Fool (1926) Written by & starring Alexander Carr with Baby Peggy as his daughter. 
 


Diana Serra Cary Interview (Baby Peggy) , Sacile, Italy 2006
 

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Sunday, September 10, 2017

Matt Smith, Douglas Booth, Sam Riley, Jack Huston










 Douglas Booth


The Limehouse Golem (2016) Olivia Cooke, Bill Nighy & Douglas Booth
Pride+Prejudice + Zombies (2016)  Lily James, Sam Riley, Jack Huston, Bella Heathcote, Douglas Booth, Matt Smith, Charles Dance & Lena Headey

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Christopher and His Kind (2011) Matt Smith, Toby Jones, Douglas Booth

King Cobra (2016) Garrett Clayton as Sean Lockhart aka Brent Corrigan, Alicia Silverstone,
James Franco, Christian Slater, Molly Ringwald

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