The Siren is exhausted, but very, very happy.
It's the last day of the blogathon, and donations and posts are still coming in. Let's make this the best day yet. Keep reading, and if you have not done so already, toss something in the hat.
As Marilyn has posted on our Facebook page, the troops have answered the rallying cry: "We've raised enough to preserve a 1,200-foot black-and-white nitrate silent film in fair condition, starting with lab inspection, cleaning, minor repair, and then moving on to make a new negative and print."
And what's more, "If we keep the donations coming, we might even be able to save a two-reeler or three-reeler."
The Siren has been delighted with the number of bloggers participating, and the very high quality of their posts. We are raising awareness in a big way, and creating an archive on this topic that will be a great resource on the Net.
But of course, the point is to raise money. And while donations have been present, and steady, and the good folks at the National Film Preservation Foundation are grateful for every dime, the Siren thinks we can do better.
First person truth time here: I've been running this blog for five years, and never asked anyone for a dime, until now. Please consider throwing a donation into the hat for the NFPF, no matter how small.
This week, the film blogosphere is demonstrating vast knowledge and love of film history. Let's also show our generosity.
More in store today here and at Ferdy on Films. I have a new post up, an interview with Lee Tsiantis, the man who played a key role in bringing the RKO Six back onto our screens a couple of years ago. Lee is a film lover working a dream job as Corporate Legal Manager at Turner Broadcasting. His work entails sifting through the vast paperwork associated with the film library there, and he has much to say about the ins and outs of film rights.
Welcome! Here is where the Siren will be keeping track of posts as they come from bloggers. You can drop her a line in comments or via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) to say your post is up. And please do the same at Marilyn's place, Ferdy on Films; as co-hosts we will be both be keeping lists.
Over at Cinema Styles, Greg has a beautiful new commercial for the Blogathon, suitable for embedding.
And remember to include the all-important
to the National Film Preservation Foundation. Feel free to include the following boilerplate, for your readers' convenience:
The National Film Preservation Foundation is the independent, nonprofit organization created by the U.S. Congress to help save America’s film heritage. They work directly with archives to rescue endangered films that will not survive without public support.
The NFPF will give away 4 DVD sets as thank-you gifts to blogathon donors chosen in a random drawing: Treasures III: Social Issues in American Film, 1900-1934 and Treasures IV: American Avant Garde Film, 1947-1986.
Do follow the links to the posts. The Siren is mighty impressed with the lineup and can't wait to read the contributions herself. Remember too that comments are a blogger's joy.
As the week goes on, this post will be continue to be top o' the Siren's blog; her own preservation posts will be immediately below.
Sunday, February 21st
The mighty James Wolcott sets a good example with his own donation and notes with pleasure that he's helping to save, among others, a Norman Mailer film called [untitled].
C. Jerry Kutner of Bright Lights After Dark has a lovely screen-cap essay on Maurice Tourneur's Victory. Stunning images, complete with the original tinting.
Mary Hess of Eastman House pays tribute to her mentor, James Card, who is a hero to all those who care about preservation. Includes a clip from the restoration of Melies' Peter Pan, which Card supervised; at Mary's new blog, Laughing Willow.
Toby Roan, of 50 Westerns from the 50s, a great blog that's new to the Siren, posts about the near-miss involving Jacques Tourneur's Stranger on Horseback, starring the beloved Joel McCrea.
Noel Vera, a familiar name to the Siren's readers, brings a preservation bulletin from the Philippines (the news ain't good) and a brilliant write-up of a sharp and prescient film that is almost entirely lost--and it was made in 1986.
Arthur S. discusses Samuel Fuller's Run of the Arrow, arguing passionately for the film's greatness and lamenting its lack of availability. (And by special request of the Siren, he includes a link to a piece on The Cobweb, a film we would both like to see resurrected.)
David Cairns devotes his Sunday Intertitle to our blogathon. The Siren won't tell you the one word of the intertitle, but she will tell you the post focuses on a name that makes her happy just to hear or look at: Lubitsch. And there is more Lubitsch here, in the splendid "Trailers for Lost Films."
MovieMan0283, at his Dancing Image blog, has an absolutely not-to-be-missed roundup of images , many from movies that are either unavailable, or damn close to it. The good news: In the year since he compiled the list, a number have been released from non-DVD purgatory (I see you, African Queen.)
Tinky Weisblatt returns to give props to three more heros of preservation, as well as to the bienniel Orphan Film Symposium. All this, and an easy recipe for peach jam. Yum!
DeeDee of Noirish City wraps up her blogathon posting with another reminder of what is at stake for film lovers. Thanks so much for your week-long support, DeeDee!
Sarah Baker, who wrote so movingly about Olive Thomas, has another must-read post, Reputations Restored: Lost and Found Movies of 1929.
Donna Hill closes out her blogathon posting with a series of marvelous clips from the silent era.
Joshua Ranger argues for preserving the lesser lights of filmdom, including the unloved biopic: "we also have to maintain the insignificant because it, too, is a piece of the picture of the past."
Jaime Grijalba posts, in Spanish, on Exodus 8:2 about one of the most keenly lamented of all lost films, London After Midnight.
Finally, my pal Glenn Kenny of Some Came Running gives us another plug, and fulfills a previously unrecognized but nonetheless urgent need: The blogathon's own haiku.
Saturday, February 20th
Buckey Grimm sums up his series with a post in praise of those who have been doing the hard work of preservation for decades now.
Dennis Nyback is back with a post about a 1940 movie, which Dennis transfered himself, of singer Ronnie Mansfield--which he screened for Mansfield's granddaughter and her children.
Stephen Morgan at Screen Addict writes about original intent--not constitutional, but cinematic.
Sara Freeman of Today's Chicago Woman has a tribute to women of the cinema, with special mention of the radiant Lillian Gish in The Scarlet Letter.
Hind Mezaina returns with clips of women having fun with swimming, cycling and sending Valentines in the early days of the century.
Tom at Motion Picture Gems posts about a film the Siren believes to be seriously underrated, Peter Bogdanovich's Nickelodeon, and the preservation message it carries.
Ryan Kelly of Medfly Quarantine signs in with a piece about that screwy, ballyhooey, phoney, super Coney, one and only...Fort Lee, New Jersey! What, you were expecting someplace else?
J.C. Loophole of The Shelf outs himself as an academic, an historian to be precise, and explains with great eloquence the historical case for film preservation: "The images we have of our nation, of our entertainment, or our highs and lows, of how we interpret those highs and lows are as important as the self-same written documents and government papers that we spend so much time and effort to preserve."
Andreas at Pussy Goes Grrr ponders the tragedy of lost films, including janitors both shamed and redeemed.
They tell me there's an Olympics going on; well, David Cairns has a clip depicting (ahem) amazing athleticism at Shadowplay.
Paula has more stills, this time from The Shamrock Handicap.
Friday, February 19th
Marilyn is looking deep into the eyes of Theda Bara in A Fool There Was.
At Gareth's Movie Diary, the proprietor uses the beguiling Bar Harbor Movie Queen, among others, to talk about the urge not only to preserve, but to present.
Jenny the Nipper of Cinema OCD has an excellent and provocative post: Bootleggers or Preservationists?
From the University of Vermont comes Adrian J. Ivakhiv at his blog Immanence, talking about the ways in which Decasia "comments on its own materiality."
Joe Thompson ends his series on the history of nitrate with a bang: the 1909 Pittsburgh film exchange explosion. Many photos.
Marilyn and I are very pleased to be joined by students, including Trish Lendo, Sadie Menchen and Charles Edward Rogers, in the moving-picture archive program at UCLA--they are the the future of preservation. (I'm also very taken with "Let Us Now Praise Scratchy Prints.")
Hind Mezaina, who writes The Culturist blog from her home in Dubai, brings in an international flavor with a series of posts that include some marvelous clips from the BFI Archive.
Justin Muschong returns with A Trip to the Acme Film Preservation Emporium.
Donna Hill also returns with stills and posters from lost films.
Thursday, February 18th
At the Phil Nugent Experience, the host gives props to several heroes of film preservation, including the inimitable Henri Langlois.
Shahn runs Six Martinis and the Seventh Art, that pictorial temple to the art of black and white; but in this photo series, she shows the ravages of decay.
Before the blogathon began, a man of the Siren's acquaintance demanded, "If this is about saving all film, what about porn, huh?" Well then, here is Doug Bonner, with a post about the perfect film stock for the Golden Age of Porn and which film from that era he would most like to see preserved.
Movie Man at The Sun's Not Yellow warms up with a post on Rossellini's Stromboli, ahead of another promised post on Sunday.
Tinky Weisblat of Our Grandmother's Kitchen posts some reminiscences about Britain's Iris Barry, who used her influence as a critic to support preservation early on. And there's also a swell recipe for tea sandwiches.
Kendra at Viv & Larry has another entry in her series tribute to the fine folks at Criterion, this one on Nights of Cabiria.
Tim Brayton at Antagony & Ecstasy finds three different faces of film preservation in those once and future media darlings, vampires.
DeeDee of Noirish City returns with a post about George Melies' The Impossible Voyage.
Buckey Grimm continues his Brief History of Nitrate with a brief post about nitrate testing, and a link to remarkable photos from some tests.
Catherine Grant at the invaluable Film Studies for Free contributes a plug and clips from "some entertaining and informative online videos about film preservation," as well as links to "openly accessible, scholarly material about this essential but expensive art and science."
Ed Howard of Only the Cinema writes about two avant-garde shorts, by Bruce Baillie and Storm de Hirsch, that have been preserved by Anthology Film Archives and included on the Treasures IV set from the NFPF.
The Siren adores Greenbriar Picture Shows, and thoughtful, funny, well-versed John McElwee, who runs it. You owe it to yourself to click on this one: "We Are All Preservationists."
The name James Card should be as familiar to film lovers as Henri Langlois. Jon Marquis, of Thoughts of Stream, shows why as he examines Pandora's Box, the resurrection of which was one of Card's finest accomplishments.
Joe Thompson is back with part II of a Brief History of Nitrate, including the perils of moviegoing at the turn of the century.
Mark Edward Heuck, who does freelance work rescuing genre and exploitation films from limbo and coaxing them onto DVD, has a touching story about how one such film brought back a small piece of a wife and mother for her famous widower and son. At the delightfully named blog The Projector Has Been Drinking.
Peter Nelhaus returns with a post about the 1934 Chinese film The Goddess, saved through the efforts of a single person, Professor Richard J. Meyer.
What this blogathon really needed was more Conrad Veidt; Paula's Movie Page has a boatload of pictures from Different From the Others.
Wednesday, February 17th
Lou Lumenick, New York Post head film critic and the Siren's TCM comrade, has a fantastic piece of writing and research at his place, about the Public Domain Purgatory of Henry Hathaway's To the Last Man--"a tight, surprisingly dark and impressive little movie."
Adam Zanzie at Icebox Movies examines Fear and Desire, the hard-to-see Stanley Kubrick film that for years has garnered "a frown, a groan, a snicker, or a goofy grin" from fans.
Brent Walker, at his blog devoted to Mack Sennett, uses that director's career to explain why the best fate for a silent movie was to be made for a company that went out of business.
Brian Herrera of Stinky Lulu signs in with a post on the sui generis Who Killed Teddy Bear, analyzing it as artifact of its era ("like a nudist magazine, Teddy Bear lets it all hang out without really ever showing anything") and as a "queer" film.
Buckey Grimm of Mindless Meanderings explains the origins and preservation methods of the Library of Congress Paper Print collection.
David Bordwell and Kristin Thompson lend their highly respected voices in support of our efforts; the plug is part of an essay about the intricacies of preserving experimental films, when the "flaws" are deliberate.
David Cairns is back with a look at the avant-garde film Decasia, so brief and impeccable the Siren will spoil it no further.
Dennis Nyback returns with an elegiac tribute to two theatres that were once grand temples of nitrate, the Michigan Theater and the Grand Riviera, both in Detroit.
Greg Ferrara, having done so much with promoting the blogathon, chips in even more at his blog Cinema Styles, with a post about C.B. DeMille's The Godless Girl, a recently restored silent sent to him by the NFPF: "The restoration of The Godless Girl allows cinephiles everywhere to witness the last great gasp of a director in the silent era before sound slowed him down."
Director Jeffrey Goodman joins in with memories of screening films with the ghost of Henri Langlois, at The Last Lullaby (and) Peril.
Justin Muschong, at Brilliant in Context, meditates on which film is worth saving ("all of it") in a witty essay that ranges from Welles to Army boots.
Karie Bible of Film Radar takes us through the lost films of Clara Bow, as well as hope in the form of some that have been restored.
Kendra at Viv & Larry is back with a loving tribute to the immortal romance of Brief Encounter.
Leo Lo, whose blog is 365 Films a Year: A Librarian's Film Journal, tackles the question of what academic librarians can do to preserve films.
At Paula's Movie Page, she has posted more stills, from Where Are My Children? and Lady Windemere's Fan. paulasmoviepage.shutterfly.com.
Tony Dayoub at Cinema Viewfinder checks in with a review of the recently restored 1922 Sherlock Holmes, and finds not only a subdued performance from John Barrymore, but also a supporting cast that includes a future ghost magnet, a future columnist and a future martini-drinking icon.
Tuesday, February 16th
Roger Ebert is once again rallying the troop for the blogathon, with more tweets about our fundraising and praise for the contributors. His devotion to preserving cinema has been an example to everyone for more than forty years, and his support gladdens our hearts.
James Wolcott gives us more reason to rejoice, with a rousing plug for the blogathon, full of links, praise and the all-important donation link to the NFPF.
Gloria Porta, lover of film in general and Charles Laughton in particular, has an amazing treat for all fans of the actor and Spartacus: an in-depth look at the movie's convoluted filming, from screenwriting to editing, and extensive discussion of Laughton's preparation and interactions on set, and a huge, invaluable list of references and links.
Gordon Dymoski of Blog This, Pal writes about the intersection of film preservation and pop culture with a piece about VCI Entertainment's reissue of the first Green Hornet serial.
Joe Thompson at The Pneumatic Rolling-Sphere Carrier Delusion offers a history of nitrate, via newspaper articles and clippings from as early as 1889--for example, a letter to the editor, in 1897, from a fire warden worried about the dangers of the movie projector setup.
Kendra of Viv & Larry continues her appreciation of all things Criterion with a post about Days of Heaven, surely on everyone's list of the most beautiful movies ever made.
Peter Nelhaus of Coffee, Coffee and More Coffee, who is rumored to have seen everything, makes his first contribution: a look at Lon Chaney's first starring role in The Penalty, detailing Chaney's amazing preparations for the role of a legless crime lord.
Sarah Baker at Flapper Jane continues her contributions with three simple, but eloquent, reasons to support film preservation.
Monday, February 15th
Catherine Krummey at Speaking of Cinema pays tribute to Martin Scorsese, a hero to preservationists everywhere, and gives a link to his acceptance speech for the Cecil B. DeMille Award at the Golden Globes.
Christopher Snowden of The Silent Movie Blog has a beautiful set of rare stills from lost movies, and some witty suggestions as to where to find the missing films--far off the beaten track.
Dennis Nyback, having wowed everyone in his interview with Anne Richardson, is going even further to help out, via a post at his own site. The irresistible title: "Nitrate Film – More Feared Than Frankenstein – Less Understood Than Eraser Head – More Dangerous than repeated viewing of Sleepless in Seattle."
Erik Loomis of alterdestiny is a historian with a specialty in the late 19th and early 20th century. Here he talks about the importance of the NFPF archives in his teaching work, using the example of a chilling 1912 movie about slum life, The Land Beyond the Sunset.
Greg offers a concentrated dose of gorgeous in a teaser post at his pictures-only blog Unexplained Cinema: 10 Frames: The Godless Girl.
Jacqueline T. Lynch at Another Old Movie Blog delves into Vertigo, reminding us that it took years for the movie's stature to grow. Although Vertigo was made in 1958, restorers stil found film stock of Hitchcock's masterpiece that was rotting in the can.
Kendra at Viv & Larry continues her blogathon contributions with a loving writeup of That Hamilton Woman, in which she pays careful attention to the design and cinematography of the film as well as the two glorious leads.
Maggie at Silver Screen Dream bemoans the state of Love Affair's print; and fearlessly tackles the question of whether some films are "worth saving."
Paula will be promoting us by posting movie pictures at her Shutterfly page all week; view the first batches here.
Rob at Rob's Movie Vault dubs The Race to Save 100 Years "Preservation 101," and unearths many salient facts among the paeans to Ted Turner. (We forgive him for that fling with colorization now, don't we?)
Sunday, February 14th
Anne Richardson of Oregon Movies A to Z has an interview with Dennis Nyback, a collector, curator and projectionist with much experience of nitrate--and film booth stories to scare the hell out of Quentin Tarantino.
Arthur S. brings his unerring eye and deep sense of film history to bear on the great Raoul Walsh and two early sound pre-Code films, The Bowery and Me and My Gal.
Betty Jo Tucker of Reel Talk Movie Reviews looks at Martin Scorsese's invaluable role as a high-profile, tireless advocate for film preservation.
Bob Fergusson, the Operator 99 of Allure, takes a single issue of Photoplay magazine from 1931 and analyzes the survival status of all 186 movies listed in it, in a riveting exercise he calls "Now You See It, Now You Don't." A must for Pre-Code hounds.
Buckey, back at his blog Mindless Meanderings, writes about the early days of film preservation, while silent movies still reigned. Among many things the Siren learned from this piece: "Productions such as D.W.Griffith’s ‘The Avenging Conscience’ were totally unusable in as little as 10 years after its release."
Buttermilk Sky, long a treasured commenter at the Siren's place, has a post on her favorite Marx Brothers film, Monkey Business, and why it deserves restoration. You had me at "Marx Brothers," though!
David Cairns, whose Shadowplay is simply one of the best classic-movie blogs anywhere on the Interwebz, ponders why Rin Tin Tin is more like Burt Lancaster than Montgomery Clift.
David Ehrenstein of FaBlog has a clip-studded tour through the highly flammable, but oh-so fabuloso history of nitrate, with Max Reinhardt's gleaming, glorious A Midsummer Night's Dream as the centerpiece.
DeeDee at Noirish City has links to the blogathon, her thoughts on and her own pledges for film preservation--and plans for her own giveaway. Check it out!
Donna at Strictly Vintage Hollywood furthers her love of all things Rudolph Valentino with a look at the great lover's three lost films. Two of these, A Sainted Devil and The Young Rajah, have fragments surviving; but Donna gives a complete storyline and numerous production stills for Uncharted Seas, not one frame of which is still with us.
Dwight Swanson of Home & Amateur writes about the poignant history of Think of Me First as a Person, a documentary put together from home-movie footage that was shot in the 1960s and 1970s by the father of a child with Down Syndrome.
Eddie Muller, president of the Film Noir Foundation, guest blogs at Marilyn's Ferdy on Films. He describes the making of Cry Danger, praises the film's excellence, and offers a heartening example of how his foundation worked with studios to get a decent print circulating once more. Lucky San Franciscans will be able to see it at the Noir City festival this year.
Ivan G. Shreve untangles the Very Meta Mystery of the two versions of It's in the Bag! (1945), one of only six movies made by radio legend Fred Allen. Ivan has even included a transcript, so you can play along at home.
Kendra of the smart, well-written Leigh & Olivier fan blog, Viv & Larry, pays tribute to everyone's favorite DVD house, Criterion.
Lou Lumenick, chief film critic of the New York Post, links arms with the blogosphere and plugs the blogathon. His teaser post has a cameo from a sad Kay Francis and a high-profile villain: Joseph P. Kennedy.
At her blog Or Maybe Eisenstein Should Just Relax, Meredith chooses the restored version of The Red Shoes to be her valentine, after seeing it at the British Film Institute--along with memorabilia from the movie, lent by Martin Scorsese.
Ray Young of Flickhead, one of the most original film writers around, reviews all six pounds of the apparently definitive work of research and love, This Film Is Dangerous: A Celebration of Nitrate Film. Amazon, anyone?
Sarah Jane Baker, the film historian and writer who maintains the Flapper Jane blog, has a lovely piece about that iconic figure of Hollywood tragedy, Olive Thomas. In Sarah's quest to blow the cobwebs off the legend, she was able to locate and preserve some films that reacquaint us with Olive, the talented actress.
Vince is the proprietor of Carole & Co., a fan blog cherished by all who appreciate painstaking research and excellent writing, as well as the great Carole Lombard. His post delves into the mystery of what Lombard looked like before her facial injuries in a 1926 car accident, and describes the fate of two early Lombard sound films.
I hope you don't mind but I have gone ahead and copied this post onto the movie preservation blog and will update as you update this one, not because anyone will go there, simply so that for archival purposes there will be a single site repository for the blogathon when all is finished and we've moved on to other topics and posts.
Greg, that is a wonderful idea and no small task, so I am most grateful you've taken it on!
"one of the most original film writers around..."
Gadzooks! I'm flattered... or you're tripping!
Wow, that was fast! I didn't know there'd be so many on the first day. Anyway, I've re-updated the post.
I have put up an announcement post at Cinema Styles along with a newly completed commercial for the blogathon to act as a kind of first post. This commercial is in the vein of a celebratory announcement now that the blogathon is here as opposed to the more sedate and somber tone of the first commercial. I have put up the link to it as well on Cinema Styles and will link to it on Facebook.
I hope you and Marilyn like it.
Oh, and I'll be writing up C.B. DeMille's The Godless Girl for my official entry this week.
Well, apparently the Friday premiere of the restored at last to complete form METROPOLIS at the Berlin Film Festival was a triumph.
The video can't happen soon enough...
Flickhead, I totally dig your film sensibility and always have. Plus, you, Girish, Peter and Filmbrain were among my first blogosphere pals, and I do not forget. :)
Greg, that is a great choice for a post; a legendary film that I haven't seen yet.
Steve, thanks for the link! Dee Dee has a bunch of links to Metropolis reviews at her place too.
Mt first post is up, http://strictly-vintage-hollywood.blogspot.com/.
Nice banner choice - Ray Collins and Tim Holt, the kind of H'wood glue that held together so many great films. Looking forward to a lot of reading.
Here's my contribution to the blogathon so far. Thanks, Sarah Baker
Ok, My Blog is up. What I am going to do is run it in 3 parts. Part 1 is up today. It is called "A Forward Look Back" Part 1 covers beginnings of Film Preservation History in the U.S Part 2 will be up Tuesday. This will look at some specific Preservation Projects. Part 3 will be up on Thursday and will cover some of the current activities and groups involved in Motion Picture Preservation. I hope you all find it of interest, and please feel free to comment.
Just included the preservation link (I was at work and couldn't get to it for a few hours). And "Swing High, Swing Low" is not that rare -- it's easy to find in the public domain, simply not in very good prints.
my post is up! http://tinyurl.com/yj82wat
My post is up at:
I don't really want to have a blog but for this week only I have added a journal section to my movie page and I will have some comments (hopefully brief) every day just for the blogathon. Today's comments are about Lucky Star -- I felt that was the right film to talk about on Valentine's Day as well as the first day of the Blogathon. We are all are very lucky stars that it was found and restored to its proper place in cinema history. www.paulasmoviepage.shutterfly.com. Siren, your blog is invaluable and all the links keep me busy for far too many (but extremely pleasurable) hours.
My post is up:
Thanks for the opportunity to participate. Looking forward to reading the other blogs.
I think I messed up. This is it:
Hi, I just posted an entry on the importance of film preservation.
You know, I put up a post on The Godless Girl on Cinema Styles' sister blog Unexplained Cinema, here, but feel bad about asking it to be a part of the blogathon because the rule with Unexplained Cinema is NO WORDS - ever. Only the title of the post. As such I don't link to anything so... that said, you don't have to include it in your list of updates and I wouldn't, and don't, expect you to. I just wanted you and anyone else who might be interested in seeing a selection of frames from a pivotal scene to know it was there.
The full review, with plenty of links, will be up on Cinema Styles tomorrow.
Hi, here's my second post:
Hi guys, thanks so much to you all! I will be updating this in about an hour. Greg, picture posts count too, I will happily link. Cheers all!
I just finished reading day one. Thank to to everyone.
I am a historian of the late 19th and early 20th century. I wrote a post in support of the blogathon discussing how wonderful these films are for teaching.
To everyone who is participating in the blogathon - Please be sure to let ME know about your links, too, as I am the cohost of this event. So far, only a few have done so. Thanks. (www.ferdyonfilms.com) DO NOT CLICK ON MY NAME TO GET TO MY BLOG; IT WILL TAKE YOU TO AN OLD BLOG OF MINE.
I finished reading day 2. Thank you again to everyone. I have learned a lot. I'm posting my first entry tomorrow after work.
This isn't a huge deal or anything, but I wanted to make sure you guys have my last name spelled as "Krummey," not "Crummey."
Otherwise, this is great to both be involved in and see.
Here's my post - more of a pop culture focus, but I think also makes the case for preserving/restoring films:
That Hamilton Woman has the greatest ending EVAH!
No surprise that it was Winston Churchill's favorite flick.
Time to squash a certain rumor about me. I haven't seen everything. I'm not sure if I want to see everything. Unseen are several films starring Adam Sandler, Freddie got Fingered, and a couple of recent films about teenage vampires. Given the opportunity, I would see John Ford's When Willie comes Marching Home and Tsui Hark's Shanghai Blues, as well as more Shaw Brothers musicals, among too many other films on my wish list.
Peter, you know I just enjoy playing "Stump the Band" with you and Karen and occasionally Glenn. :D That list is still a lot shorter than mine! I wish I had seen you on Ultimate Film Fanatic.
Here's today's post:
I have read everything so far for day 3 and continue to learn. I made my donation to film preservation and posted my first contribution to the blogathon:
Why Do We Need to Preserve Films? A Brief History of Nitrate (Part I)
Did you know that the German Army at the beginning of World War One sufferred from Vinegar Syndrome?
My post on Kubrick's Fear and Desire (1953) is now up:
My review of The Godless Girl is up. You can find it at Cinema Styles here. Enjoy.
My post for the blogathon and on "The Legacy of Langlois" is now up:
Thank you so much for doing this!
Campaspe, Thanks for the kind comments!
Mind you, the sources are just the ones I choose to ellaorate the post upon, of course there are lots of books on Kubrick, Douglas and other participants which would be equaally enriching.
(As for the links: these are just the ones I had in fmy collection of bookmarks and I hope to come across some more interesting Spartacus-related links in the future!)
BTW, in the One of Spartacus' comments tracks, it is stated by dalton Trumbo that Tigranes should be played by a star of greater magnitude, and suggests Orson Welles (now that could have added to the intrigue!...he). I think that was a good suggestion even though I quite like Herbert Lom, so I remain undecided.
Turung to something not in any immediate need of resotration, but right up The Siren's alley, I saw a new Italian film called I Am Love last evening. REALLY something. The writer-director, Lucas Guardagnino, has only a few credits to his name, but he directs like a Grand Master.
Set in the uppermost reaches of Milanese society it concerns a Great and Powerful Family, adjusting to Capitalism Today and their own personal probems. The aged paterfamilias is played by the great Gabrielle Ferzetti -- who while older than God is as compelling as he was in L'Avventura umpteen years ago. His wife is played by (exceptionally well) Marisa Berenson (whose features have been "lifted" into a Mask of Tragedy.) The center of the action is the wife of his eldest son, played by Tilda Swinton -- who speaks Italian very well. Her accent is explained by her being of Russian origin -- and she speaks Russian too in a few scenes.
The family is about to sell its assests and become richer than ever. With her sons grown and her husband (who she never really cared for all that much) more distant than ever, she's at loose ends. Then she meets a friend of her son's -- a master young chef who's about to go into the reatuarant business with him. He's around the family manse a lot as their are a great many Big Party meals he's responsible for. The he and Tilda get busy -- and it utterly destroys her.
There are many interesting subsidiary characters -- particularly her daughter who has just very happily come out as a lesbian. And many of the actors in small roles are "(Insert Name Here) Visconti di Modrone."
The visual style of the film, however, is rather different from Visconti (though he would have heartily approved.) I'd have to see the film again to figure it all out, but it's quite epic with many things observed from a considerable distance.
John Adams did the score -- and its better than Glass.
Opening stateside in June this is not to be missed under any circumstances.
And I for one can't resist a movie in which "The jig is up" when the soup course is served.
If anyone is interested, I updated my Preservation Week only journal with entries on Where Are My Children (from Tuesday) and Lady Windermere's Fan (today, Thursday). Not sure what will be next. :) paulasmoviepage.shutterfly.com.
I'm back, again :)
David, it does sound very very much like My Sort of Thing. I will definitely keep an eye out for it.
Thanks very much to all of Wednesday's contributors!
wow, bordwell and thompson, we read their textbooks in film classes in college.
I finished reading all the day four posts. This has been a very educational week. Thank you to everyone.
I posted the my second installment:
"Why Do We Need to Preserve Films? A Brief History of Nitrate (Part II)"
Paula: You said "if anyone is interested..." I'm very interested, but I haven't figured out how to post a comment on your page. Great choice of subjects and photos.
Here is my just-published post on an unusual beneficiary of preservation, and the people most grateful for it:
Thank you for allowing me to contribute to this great event.
Day 5! This time it's Different From the Others, starring the great Conrad Veidt -- over 400 screencaps and a bit of journaling at the same Bat Channel: http://paulasmoviepage.shutterfly.com/
Mark, thanks for a great post! It's fascinating. Took me a while to see it as when I first tried I got a rather stern warning about adult content, and then my screen froze; I guess this is the Web equivalent of being carded. I will be most happy to add it as soon as I can. Thanks so much for helping out!
Here is my post for the blogathon, about 2 avant-garde shorts, by Bruce Baillie and Storm de Hirsch, that have been preserved by Anthology Film Archives and included on the Treasures IV set.
Great job on this blogathon so far, Siren. It's been fantastic!
Film Studies For Free's entry to the blogathon is now up: "To Decasia and Back: Film Preservation Studies"
. I have really enjoyed all the entries so far. Thanks so much.
My post is up. Thanks for all the organization and the great reading material!
Yours in love of film,
I have a post to contribute!!!!!
here's my entry for today:
PS, I see you, Laurence Olivier in Henry V <3
Here's my entry: http://antagonie.blogspot.com/2010/02/vampire-stories.html
Thanks so much everyone! I will probably not be able to update until later tonight, but rest assured it will all go in there.
Drives me nuts to see your current banner picture, a scene from Convention City, and know we will probably never see it due to early PC and Warner's caving and recalling and destroying all (theoretically) prints in the early 40's. Aargh. That said, a perfect banner for the Blogathon.
Bob, all my banners this week are lost films, sadly, and they all hurt, but this one particularly because the destruction was deliberate.
I finished reading the day five posts. Thank you everyone. There's a lot of dedication out there.
I also posted my third and last entry. I decided to go out with a bang, so this is the story of the 1909 Pittsburgh film exchange explosion:
I've just added a post to the blogathon, with a rumination on film, images, time, decay, and mortality, at Immanence.
I have a post to contribute:
I also gave a shout out to John McElwee's excellent post at Greenbriar Picture Show.
Alas, not much free time -- so I was only able to screencap one half of The Shamrock Handicap last night. It's now up and er, running, at http://paulasmoviepage.shutterfly.com/
I'll have the rest uploaded by the end of the weekend. (I hope.) The picture quality is very soft, due to the fact that the source is my personal videotape of this movie recorded off AMC way back in 1997 (I think) when it ran its last Film Preservation Festival, dedicated to John Ford. I wanted to say "thanks" to AMC -- or the AMC that was -- and also thanks to MOMA (which has preserved this film) for all it has done over the decades.
Joe, I'm delighted you're enjoying the site. I've enjoyed your blogs too (I'm trying to read as many blogs as possible this week.) If you want to leave a comment, under each blog entry is a plus sign with the words "Add Comment." Just click on the plus sign and a box will open up where you can write your comment. Then click "add" and it will be posted.
Took me an absurdly long time to get this up; I think I really struggled with execution of the original idea...
Thanks for the wonderful work on this.
Paula: I enjoyed your John Ford post too. I refreshed my memory and found that the problem when I try to leave is a comment is it wants me to sign up for shutterfly. I haven't done that yet. Maybe one of these days.
I finished reading all the day six posts. I'm exhausted and happy and educated. Thank you all for sharing your variety of talents and interests. I'd like to echo Marilyn's suggestion in Facebook: Keep commenting. We bloggers are gluttons for feedback ;0) Thank you to the kind folks who have commented on my postings.
Thank you so much for doing all of this. It's beautiful to see so many people banding together for the sake of film preservation.
I've just written my own last-minute contribution to the blogathon.
Again, thanks a lot! This is simply incredible, and all these posts are very informative.
Another little one. A few more like this, and I must write something substantial for the end of the week.
One more short and personal addition--mostly because the Orphans Symposium has only been briefly alluded to in the blogathon.
I've had such fun reading. Thanks to you FOF for this wonderful experience.
Siren- my post Restoring Film, Preserving Art and Conserving Culture (I tweeked the title a bit- a blogger is entitled!) is finally up. I hope it helps. Here is the link: http://randomshelf.blogspot.com/2010/02/restoring-film-preserving-art-and.html
Thanks for your example and leadership and efforts!
It's not directy related to the blogathon, but coincidentally the next item in my series on Grauman's Chinese, which I just posted this morning, is Raoul Walsh's hand, feet, and eye patch prints:
It serves as a supplement to Arthur S's excellent post on Walsh:
Next month it's John Barrymore, including his profile.
I finished reading the day seven posts. There are a lot of smart, talented people out there. Thanks for sharing.
If ever I suffer from overmuch beauty, certainly this blogathon is one of those rare occasions - images and words full of hope and glory; disparate, brilliant writers and enthusiasts eloquently making the case for a cultural necessity, and it humbles me to see how hard you all have worked on this endeavour - it's almost too much to take in, thank the gods it's over seven days.
It's not for us to forget the lost ones, and the other films waiting for restoration, sometimes in vain, but this week of solidarity and the amazing breadth of talent here at least makes it look hopeful and not bitter. I gladly donated what I could, and a more worthy cause simply doesn't exist. Thanks to all of you, and especially Siren and Marilyn for ramrodding!
Thank you so much for co-hosting this event! You and Marilyn rock. I appreciate your kind words about my Scarlet Letter entry. Please let me know if there's anything else I can do. I'd love to help out next year. I love your blog and taste in movies. :-)
Shout out from the Philippines:
Sorry, forgot to code it:
Mario O'Hara's Bagong Hari (The New King, 1986)
a piece on Fuller's RUN OF THE ARROW, including the all-important link to THE COBWEB which the Siren asked me to install, specifically.
Of course, the Sunday Intertitle couldn't very well miss connecting with this subject.
A round-up of images from many unreleased (and some released) films:
Published Friday for the blogathon but posting here now. My roundabout take on why it matters to preserve the mediocre and bad as well as the great
My humble collaboration to this magnificent blogathon is here, I talk about my "favorit lost film", I give some info and some hope on its finding. I could never be on match of my fellow posters, so I decided to bring it to a new audience, as I wrote it in Spanish.
Thank you and good luck with the Blogathon:
Un Vampiro no tan Inmortal/A not so Inmortal Vampire
I didn't realize Shutterfly made you sign up to leave a comment. That's dumb! Oh well... sorry! Alas, it will take another couple of days to finish off The Shamrock Handicap which means my "journalathon" will be extended a bit -- but I'll let ya'll know when it's done. By the way, Robert Osbourne of TCM is holding his sixth annual film festival in Athens, GA in March. John Bengston, among others, will be on a panel discussion. Go here for info: http://www.robertosbornefilmfestival.com/
This one is pretty impressive -- even I'm impressed! Not by my writing, but by the images.
Hi. Um...is it too late to get in one last contribution before this blog-a-thon officially ends, or has it officially ended already.
In any case, I didn't have much time last week to craft something really good for the blog-a-thon, but I decided to give a shout-out to it at my blog tonight. I also said a few words about King Vidor's 1928 masterpiece The Crowd, since that was what I was originally going to write about for the blog-a-thon in more depth.
Anyway, here's the link, and I hope it suffices: http://mylife24fps.blogspot.com/2010/02/odds-ends-for-week-ended-feb-20-2010.html
Kenji, thanks very much for the post! I will include it later today in my "wrap" post.
Siren, I apologize for being so late, but I have a preservation post, even if it's outside the time limit:
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