Silent Film Screenings

Discuss films and filmmakers of the 20th century (and even a little of the 19th century). Threads may contain spoilers.
Post Reply
Message
Author
ehimle
Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2009 9:35 am

Silent Film Screenings

#1 Post by ehimle » Mon Sep 07, 2009 12:05 am

I don't know if there is a topic like this anywhere on here. But here in UT (specifically in SLC area) we have the "Organ Loft" that screens silents with live organ accompaniment. Since this isn't TV, and people might not be aware of silents playing in their area it might be cool to have a topic on this.

Anyways, in the Deseret News (a local paper) today it was announced the organ loft is going to be showing a 3-d print of Murnau's Nosferatu. Nov 5-7th (I guess they couldn't do it on Halloween).
Sounds pretty cool. Anyone know anything about this?

Also some other films are going to be showing too. three films starring Douglas Fairbanks, "The wild and woolly" on 9/10-11, "A modern Musketeer 10/8-9, and "When Clouds Roll By" 11/19-20 (anyone know about these?)
and
Lon Chaney's "Phantom of the Opera" 10/21-23

Hopefully there are other places that screen silents, so this topic won't be for the utahns only.

User avatar
fiddlesticks
Joined: Thu Sep 20, 2007 8:19 pm
Location: Borderlands

Re: Silent Film Screenings

#2 Post by fiddlesticks » Mon Sep 07, 2009 1:56 am

The Arcata Theatre Lounge here in Humboldt shows silents most every Wednesday from 5pm until sometime around midnight. Their program tends to be mostly shorts with a feature-length presentation or two mixed in. Unfortunately, they never seem to announce their screening schedule in advance, so it's catch as catch can. They typically use digital projection and play whatever music is on the disc, but the upside is that it's free and they have a modest kitchen and full bar to go along with it (and popcorn is just 50 cents!) All in all it's a pretty nice treat to have in a small hippie-wanna-be town trapped behind the Redwood Curtain.

(edited for spelling)
Last edited by fiddlesticks on Mon Sep 07, 2009 3:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Adam
Joined: Sun Dec 09, 2007 8:29 pm
Location: Los Angeles CA
Contact:

Re: Silent Film Screenings

#3 Post by Adam » Mon Sep 07, 2009 2:22 pm

The Silent Movie Theater in Los Angeles screens them at least every Wednesday. Used to be only silents, but they've moved on.

User avatar
rohmerin
Joined: Mon Aug 07, 2006 10:36 am
Location: Spain

Re: Silent Film Screenings

#4 Post by rohmerin » Mon Sep 07, 2009 7:49 pm

Buster Keaton's Our hospitality will be screened at the Barbican here in London this 20th

http://www.barbican.org.uk/film/event-d ... sp?ID=9569" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

User avatar
the mad circle
Joined: Fri Aug 28, 2009 9:33 pm
Location: It's nice here.

Re: Silent Film Screenings

#5 Post by the mad circle » Tue Sep 08, 2009 2:20 am

The Northwest Film Forum in Seattle is screening The Saga of Gosta Berling with live accompaniment on October 16th. A Swedish cinema classic starring Greta Garbo!

http://www.nwfilmforum.org/live/page/calendar/1032

User avatar
The Elegant Dandy Fop
Joined: Thu Dec 09, 2004 3:25 am
Location: Los Angeles, CA

Re: Silent Film Screenings

#6 Post by The Elegant Dandy Fop » Tue Sep 08, 2009 2:53 am

Adam wrote:The Silent Movie Theater in Los Angeles screens them at least every Wednesday. Used to be only silents, but they've moved on.
I like the idea, but the crowd that goes drives me nuts. I went to go see White Dog here before it was on DVD and people were laughing, yelling and throwing popcorn at the screen. It wasn't even a midnight showing. All the people that run it looks like they're severally fucked in the head, to put it lightly.

I much prefer the American Cinematheque (but they don't play as many rare films any more) or the LACMA to watch classic films.

User avatar
Arthur Bannister
Joined: Mon Jun 09, 2008 1:01 am
Location: On board the Circe

Re: Silent Film Screenings

#7 Post by Arthur Bannister » Wed Sep 09, 2009 1:59 am

The Golem will be shown with live musical accompaniment by Brian LeBarton ("best known as Beck’s prodigious music director"!) on 31 October at REDCAT in Los Angeles. Details here.

Sheriff Chambers
Joined: Tue May 13, 2008 4:53 pm

'Silent' version of Vampyr screening

#8 Post by Sheriff Chambers » Thu Sep 17, 2009 3:02 am

The Barbican Centre in London is running another of its Silent Film and Live Music seasons, 20 September to 13 December, and includes a screening of Vampyr on Sunday 18 October, 4pm, with live accompaniment by HarmonieBand - Vampires and Phantoms in Silent Film – Part I.

Since when did Vampyr become a silent film? And why would anyone think it necessary to do away with Wolfgang Zeller’s score? Does anyone know what’s going on here?

Details below:

http://www.barbican.org.uk/film/series.asp?id=263" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

User avatar
zedz
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 7:24 pm

Re: 'Silent' version of Vampyr screening

#9 Post by zedz » Thu Sep 17, 2009 3:55 pm

Sheriff Chambers wrote:Since when did Vampyr become a silent film? And why would anyone think it necessary to do away with Wolfgang Zeller’s score? Does anyone know what’s going on here?
A pet peeve of mine, too. They must be working with the definition of 'silent film' (roughly: old black-and-white film that our middle-class audience just might have heard of) that includes City Lights, Modern Times and Alexander Nevsky.

Sheriff Chambers
Joined: Tue May 13, 2008 4:53 pm

Re: Silent Film Screenings

#10 Post by Sheriff Chambers » Thu Sep 17, 2009 5:39 pm

I'm afraid it's worse than that. I rang the Barbican to find out more only to learn that they didn't know that Vampyr wasn't a silent film. Somebody said they thought the film had been ‘modified’ for the new score, but, to be fair, I’m not sure I was speaking to anyone all that closely involved in the screening. All a bit disappointing really. And I couldn't resist asking if they had similar plans for other sound films. I didn't get a helpful response.

owheeler
Joined: Fri Jul 25, 2008 11:06 am

Re: Silent Film Screenings

#11 Post by owheeler » Sun Sep 20, 2009 10:06 pm

Buster Keaton's Steamboat Bill, Jr. is playing for a single showing each in Amherst and Northampton, MA, to live accompaniment, in early October.

http://amherstcinema.org/?q=films-and-e ... ill%2C-jr.

User avatar
MichaelB
Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 6:20 pm
Location: Worthing
Contact:

Re: 'Silent' version of Vampyr screening

#12 Post by MichaelB » Tue Sep 22, 2009 9:36 am

zedz wrote:A pet peeve of mine, too. They must be working with the definition of 'silent film' (roughly: old black-and-white film that our middle-class audience just might have heard of) that includes City Lights, Modern Times and Alexander Nevsky.
Having seen Nevsky "live" twice, I'd absolutely defend it - Prokofiev's original recording is notoriously compromised in a great many ways, and Carl Davis and Vladimir Ashkenazy managed to extract far more from the score.

Granted, it's probably not a good idea if it's your first (let alone only) screening of the film, and I'd be lying if I said that the balance between existing film sound and live orchestra and chorus was entirely satisfactory, but it's not as though the original has been mothballed - in fact, as far as I'm aware the 1990s remastering of the film, with Yuri Temirkanov conducting the replacement score, has never come out on DVD (I still have the old RCA VHS).

ptmd
Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 1:12 pm

Re: Silent Film Screenings

#13 Post by ptmd » Tue Oct 13, 2009 5:56 pm

For those that are interested in special silent film events, here is the program for a December conference I've put together at Yale University (in New Haven, CT) focusing on European films made in or around the year 1919: http://www.yale.edu/macmillan/europeans ... 19Film.pdf.

Almost everything is screening in a restored or pristine archival print and this is a very rare chance to look intensively at this incredibly rich period. Several of these films have never played in the US before and are unlikely to do so again in the near future, so I hope at least a few of you will be able to attend. Everything is free and open to the public and I am happy to answer any questions about directions, etc. via PM or email.

unclehulot
Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 3:09 pm
Location: here and there

Re: 'Silent' version of Vampyr screening

#14 Post by unclehulot » Tue Oct 13, 2009 11:56 pm

MichaelB wrote:
zedz wrote:A pet peeve of mine, too. They must be working with the definition of 'silent film' (roughly: old black-and-white film that our middle-class audience just might have heard of) that includes City Lights, Modern Times and Alexander Nevsky.
Having seen Nevsky "live" twice, I'd absolutely defend it - Prokofiev's original recording is notoriously compromised in a great many ways, and Carl Davis and Vladimir Ashkenazy managed to extract far more from the score.

Granted, it's probably not a good idea if it's your first (let alone only) screening of the film, and I'd be lying if I said that the balance between existing film sound and live orchestra and chorus was entirely satisfactory, but it's not as though the original has been mothballed - in fact, as far as I'm aware the 1990s remastering of the film, with Yuri Temirkanov conducting the replacement score, has never come out on DVD (I still have the old RCA VHS).
That Temirkanov version was also on LaserDisc.....one that I'm glad I picked up!

User avatar
Ben Cheshire
Joined: Thu Sep 24, 2009 2:01 am

Re: Silent Film Screenings

#15 Post by Ben Cheshire » Wed Oct 14, 2009 8:39 am

Someone changed a score by Prokofiev? Now I've heard everything!

I saw a screening of Modern Times in France with live orchestra playing the score; in this case, they followed the original cues exactly, and played the original sound effects from the film's soundtrack.

I'm in Sydney, Australia. The only place I've ever seen silent film screenings here is the Art Gallery of NSW which does a free film screening every wed with an encore on sunday. I saw Pabst's Pandora's Box, which was splendid!

User avatar
MichaelB
Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 6:20 pm
Location: Worthing
Contact:

Re: Silent Film Screenings

#16 Post by MichaelB » Wed Oct 14, 2009 9:52 am

Ben Cheshire wrote:Someone changed a score by Prokofiev? Now I've heard everything!
The score was the same - the difference was that it was played by a live orchestra and chorus.

And the results were spectacular: Prokofiev's original recording was always badly compromised by inadequate resources and rehearsal time and an experimental microphone technique that didn't come off, whereas the live version offers as physically thrilling an experience as I've ever had watching a film. True, it does significantly shift the balance from Eisenstein to Prokofiev, and from dialogue to music (if anyone talked while the music was playing, you were wholly reliant on the subtitles), but I've always thought the score was the best thing about that film anyway.

User avatar
Ben Cheshire
Joined: Thu Sep 24, 2009 2:01 am

Re: Silent Film Screenings

#17 Post by Ben Cheshire » Wed Oct 14, 2009 10:17 am

When I first saw it I felt the "big sky" compositions were its signature, and stunning.

User avatar
LQ
Joined: Thu Jun 19, 2008 7:51 am
Contact:

Re: Silent Film Screenings

#18 Post by LQ » Fri Oct 16, 2009 11:13 am

The Devil Music Ensemble released fall tour dates; they're touring with Nosferatu & Red Heroine this season.

User avatar
fiddlesticks
Joined: Thu Sep 20, 2007 8:19 pm
Location: Borderlands

Re: Silent Film Screenings

#19 Post by fiddlesticks » Fri Oct 16, 2009 1:51 pm

A couple of small high schools up here who have a combined orchestra are providing live accompaniment for the Clara Bow film It (1927). Six performances over two weekends. It may not be ideal quality (or maybe it will be; I know nothing about these high schools), but what a great idea.

User avatar
Arthur Bannister
Joined: Mon Jun 09, 2008 1:01 am
Location: On board the Circe

Re: Silent Film Screenings

#20 Post by Arthur Bannister » Fri Oct 16, 2009 2:34 pm

On October 18, In celebration of the 87th anniversary of the opening of The Egyptian Theater in Hollywood, the American Cinematheque will screen The Big Parade with live musical accompaniment by Robert Israel from the original score. Beforehand, there will be a lecture on Karl Dane's life & career by Laura Petersen Balogh, author of the book Karl Dane: A Biography & Filmography.

Sad to say I will be out of town that day and won't be able to attend.

User avatar
LQ
Joined: Thu Jun 19, 2008 7:51 am
Contact:

Re: Silent Film Screenings

#21 Post by LQ » Thu Oct 29, 2009 2:59 pm

Tomorrow night in Philadelphia: Nosferatu with live pipe organ accompaniment. Info here.

User avatar
rohmerin
Joined: Mon Aug 07, 2006 10:36 am
Location: Spain

Re: Silent Film Screenings

#22 Post by rohmerin » Fri Oct 30, 2009 5:39 pm

What nervous I am! I've got my ticket for the Abel Gance's J'accuse screening this Sunday at the Barbican.
Many years without watching a silent film with live music on a screen. I saw the Chaplin's 2 years ago, but they include recorded music... and it's not the same.

any chance of watching 7th heaven in London? If the BFI is going to release the film on DVD, it should be a perfect chance for a screening.

I don't like very much the selection of BFI on films. And yes, Londoners, you were right, they preferred to make another fancy café to a other cinema. Screen 2 is so small. Screen one is very good. I liked in the BFI film festival films I saw.

Cheers

User avatar
TMDaines
Joined: Wed Nov 11, 2009 1:01 pm
Location: Stretford, Manchester

Re: Silent Film Screenings

#23 Post by TMDaines » Mon Dec 21, 2009 3:45 pm

The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari with live accompaniment by Cipher at the Warwick Arts Centre (University of Warwick/Coventry) on Fri 12th Feb. Very reasonable price too. The running time is listed at 58mins though. Is that cut?

HarryLong
Joined: Tue Nov 25, 2008 12:39 pm
Location: Lebanon, PA

Re: Silent Film Screenings

#24 Post by HarryLong » Mon Dec 21, 2009 5:44 pm

Per imdb:

71 min | France:78 min | Spain:50 min | USA:67 min | USA:51 min (video version)

(I wonder which video version?)

User avatar
TMDaines
Joined: Wed Nov 11, 2009 1:01 pm
Location: Stretford, Manchester

Re: Silent Film Screenings

#25 Post by TMDaines » Mon Dec 21, 2009 7:39 pm

HarryLong wrote:Per imdb:

71 min | France:78 min | Spain:50 min | USA:67 min | USA:51 min (video version)

(I wonder which video version?)
Yeah, this is what confused me.

Post Reply