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WHAT SILENTS & PRE-CODES HAVE YOU SEEN LATELY?

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CineMaven
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Re: WHAT SILENTS & PRE-CODES HAVE YOU SEEN LATELY?

Postby CineMaven » June 25th, 2012, 2:40 pm

I have a silly sense of humor Alison. I didn't mean anything by the Hitler remark. Really I didn't. I know exactly what you mean. Working for the bored of dread (or Board of Ed., if you insist) is great for families. You can have summers and be home together at a reasonable. time.

Come around...grouse if you want. It's all good.
charliechaplinfan wrote:Are you trying to tell me that when I have the puppy I won't have time for movie watching or posting :shock: heavens. I'll have to cram it all into the time Chris takes her for a walk. I'm going to educate her to be a film fan. I love all the fast talking, thirties movies have an energy and zip all of their own!!

You've got to ask Wendy how SHE does it: husband, kid, puppy, messy kitchen. She can probably write a manual about how one mixes real life with reel life. Find out what kinds of movies Lily, her new pup, likes. Maybe you can start off your new puppy with those films too. If you can't the puppy on board, it's gonna be a problem...for me. Some dogs like the fast paced, fast-talkin' 30's. Then others are into the swinging 60's. Depends on the breed.

Hmmmm... :shock: I must be missing something in Life here on my end. It's not nearly as full as yours.

T.
"You build my gallows high, baby."

http://www.megramsey.com

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charliechaplinfan
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Re: WHAT SILENTS & PRE-CODES HAVE YOU SEEN LATELY?

Postby charliechaplinfan » June 25th, 2012, 3:46 pm

I have a silly sense of humour too Theresa, I understood what you meant.

I can see I'll be needing advice from Wendy about how she does it all, at the moment I'm trying to puppy proof the house, not that anyone has started putting their shoes away etc they'll learn.

I will come here as faithfully as ever, little puppy or not. Being a female I hope she's going to be as susceptible to all my favourites, Errol Flynn, Cary Grant, Charles Boyer, Chaplin, Keaton, Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, Gene Kelly, the list is endless.
Failure is unimportant. It takes courage to make a fool of yourself - Charlie Chaplin

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JackFavell
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Re: WHAT SILENTS & PRE-CODES HAVE YOU SEEN LATELY?

Postby JackFavell » June 25th, 2012, 6:12 pm

I haven't any tips to offer, I can barely get to my own watching, much less advise anyone! Lily curls up with me on the couch though to watch movies, which is very pleasant and warm.

Lily likes movies with dogs. It's amazing how many movies have dogs barking in the background that I never noticed till now, especially anything with crowded background scenes. I think it has happened at least once a day while watching TCM. Lily responds to them all by growling and barking back. I feel bad, she obviously doesn't know that these dogs all died 50 to 80 years ago, so whatever problems they were having are long gone. She also 'talks' to the next door neighbor's dog, and the dog down the street three houses away, and the one a block away up the hill.....She is quite chatty, but not too loud.... mostly.

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charliechaplinfan
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Re: WHAT SILENTS & PRE-CODES HAVE YOU SEEN LATELY?

Postby charliechaplinfan » June 26th, 2012, 5:38 am

I'm hoping that I can train her to be my clone. Chris helpfully has been watching youtube videos about dog training, aparently when the pup is doing something you don't want it to do you have to make a loud noise similar to her litter mates and then offer her a better alternative. I take it that he wants me to yelp at her everytime she does something wrong, oh boy, better start practicing now. I'm only used to cats, you don't train cats you just fit yourself in around them.
Failure is unimportant. It takes courage to make a fool of yourself - Charlie Chaplin

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Ann Harding
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Re: WHAT SILENTS & PRE-CODES HAVE YOU SEEN LATELY?

Postby Ann Harding » June 26th, 2012, 7:48 am

Yesterday I went to see some digitized films at the French Cinémathèque. They have a few Triangle pictures which are the only extant prints of these films.

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The Desert Man (1917, William S. Hart) with Wm S. Hart, Margery Wilson, Henry Belmar & Milton Ross

Jim Alton (Wm S. Hart) is a prospector lost in the desert. He runs into a dying woman who fled her nasty husband, the town's barber. Jim arrives in town and expels the nasty barber. He becomes foster father of the man's little boy...

This Bill Hart film is slightly incomplete (missing reel 4). But the missing action was explained in one card. The surviving print has French title-cards that lacked the sparkling humour of the original. But the print quality was really good. For once, I could appreciate the chiaroscuro and the backlit sequences by the masterful Joe August. The story written by Lambert Hillyer had elements of romance when Jim Alton falls in love with the pretty Jennie (Margery Wilson) who runs away with a doctor. Alas, he turns out to be a cad (already married). Poor Jenny becomes a dance hall girl. The film mixed comedy and melodrama with skill. When Jim looks for a doctor for Jenny's dying grandfather, he has to run after the man and catches him with a lasso. The nasty barber is also treated as he deserves after bullying the whole city (and beating his wife and child) for years. He is made to sit in the barber's chair and gets a shave in front of the whole (laughing) city. The final is full of suspense with Jim having to fight a whole bunch of nasties to rescue his foster child. Overall a very worthy Hart. Short excerpt on the CF website.

Image

The Despoiler (1915, Reginald Barker) with Frank Keenan, Enid Markey & Charles K. French

On the Turkish-Armenian border, Colonel von Werfel (C.K. French) uses Kurds to attack cities. Khan Ouâdaliah (F. Keenan) heads the Kurds while keeping an eye on the colonel's daughter Beatrice(E. Markey). During the siege of the city, the Khan threatens to unleash his soldiers on the town's women unless Beatrice gives herself to him...

This T.H. Ince production directed by Reginald Barker has a complex history. The film originally released in the US in 1915 was a powerful (and disturbing) plea for peace, but when it came out in 1917 in France, the film had been edited and the title cards completely changed. In the original, the film takes place in 'war-torn' Europe and the colonel's name (Damien) sounds distinctly French. Also the terrifying ending turns out to be just a colonel's nightmare. In the new cut, the film becomes anti-German with a level of violence that must have made the spectators of the time cringe in horror. Frank Keenan plays a beastly Kurd (in turban and blackface) who rapes wit relish poor Enid Markey. As for the girl, she takes her revenge by killing her tormentor while he is asleep and drunk. The scene has kept its disturbing power for a modern spectator. And on top, the rape takes place inside a convent and the rapist is a Muslim. The print quality varies enormously. The first reels are from a dupe and the last reels are from the original negative. But there is no doubt that this Barker picture is a fascinating and disturbing picture. There are a few excerpts on the CF website.

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JackFavell
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Re: WHAT SILENTS & PRE-CODES HAVE YOU SEEN LATELY?

Postby JackFavell » June 26th, 2012, 9:27 am

How was the acting, Ann? I've found Enid Markey to be a very effective actress.

I think I've seen that Hart film before. I remember the barber getting shaved. Hart and August made some gorgeous films. I'm glad yiou got to see a beautiful print.

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Re: WHAT SILENTS & PRE-CODES HAVE YOU SEEN LATELY?

Postby Ann Harding » June 26th, 2012, 11:30 am

I thought that the scene when Enid Markey decides to kill Frank Keenan was quite devastating. She looked dishevelled and completely beaten until she finds the gun left by Keenan on the table. She takes it and moves slowly towards him as he lays asleep (completely drunk). Then, she pulls the trigger. He gets up and for a long moment you wonder what will happen until he collapses dead. The scene was still very effective nearly 100 years after it was shot.

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Re: WHAT SILENTS & PRE-CODES HAVE YOU SEEN LATELY?

Postby JackFavell » June 26th, 2012, 2:46 pm

That sounds devastating, Ann! You make me want to see it, almost as much as the Hart film.

feaito

Re: WHAT SILENTS & PRE-CODES HAVE YOU SEEN LATELY?

Postby feaito » June 27th, 2012, 2:56 pm

Yesterday I saw "The Vanishing American" (1925) a fine Western directed by George B. Seitz starring Richard Dix (who's very good and believable in his role) as a Native American living in a Reservation Camp in the West during the time of WWI. Dix plays a decent, honest, likable, pacific and good-natured Indian, something unusual in American cinema and that's to be lauded. He's the hero of the picture and the "white" girl (lovely Lois Wilson, giving a sensitive, nuanced performance) falls for him. Noah Beery plays one of the slimiest and most unpleasant villains I have seen lately; I hated him on sight. Malcolm McGregor is a young soldier who falls for Wilson, but whose love is unrequited. The film begins with a prologue that depicts all the inhabitants of the area where the Reservation is located from the beginning of time, going through the Spanish Invasion during the XVIth Century et al. Most of the actors who play native americans are so, and the film also shows the bravery of these people when the went to fight for the USA during WWI.

What I did not like: the excessive use of intertitles and the organ score.

feaito

Re: WHAT SILENTS & PRE-CODES HAVE YOU SEEN LATELY?

Postby feaito » June 28th, 2012, 3:06 pm

Yesterday I saw "The Lady" (1925) with Norma Talmadge. In spite of the bad condition of some sequences and the inexistence of others, I enjoyed Norma's portrayal (perhaps one of her best dramatic performances) of Polly aka Madame Blanche (the film was remade in 1933 with Irene Dunne as "The Secret of Madame Blanche"). Polly is a vaudeville performer (late 1800s) who falls in love with the son (a cad) of a British Marquis. They get married, the marquis disinherits him **spoilers**, the man gets tired of Polly's friends and her rough manners, begins an affair and their marriage is annulled. Polly gives birth to a son, goes to work as a singer in a Parisian brothel, loses her son, etc. A melodrama in the "Madame X" vein, but expertly handled by Frank Borzage, with beautiful cinematography by Tony Gaudio (not very apparent in the rather poor print I saw) and with a glowing, subtle, wonderful performance by Talmadge. I'd like to see a complete print of this superior drama.

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Re: WHAT SILENTS & PRE-CODES HAVE YOU SEEN LATELY?

Postby JackFavell » June 28th, 2012, 3:38 pm

It also sounds like the plot of Frisco Jenny with Ruth Chatterton.

feaito

Re: WHAT SILENTS & PRE-CODES HAVE YOU SEEN LATELY?

Postby feaito » June 28th, 2012, 4:09 pm

I saw "Frisco Jenny" a couple of years ago or perhaps more, but I don't remember much of the plot except for the earthquake! :wink:

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Re: WHAT SILENTS & PRE-CODES HAVE YOU SEEN LATELY?

Postby JackFavell » June 28th, 2012, 4:53 pm

Frisco Jenny is a San Francisco girl who has a baby out of wedlock, and then rises to be a madame in order to support her child. Because of a murder scandal in which she is the only witness, she gives up her boy to a family who say they will take care of him while she's in prison. When she gets out after a few years, he doesn't remember her and she leaves him there, sadly thinking he is better off with the 'nice' family. She rises to control vice and bootlegging in the city and he of course becomes district attorney. She makes it so he wins the election, and her partner in crime loses. When the partner gets mad and threatens to tell him that he's her son, she kills him. Guess who puts her on trial for murder? When asked whether there were extenuating circumstances in the murder (like blackmail) Jenny remains silent so her son will never know the truth.

feaito

Re: WHAT SILENTS & PRE-CODES HAVE YOU SEEN LATELY?

Postby feaito » June 28th, 2012, 5:28 pm

Thanks for reminding me about the film's plot WEN :wink:

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Re: WHAT SILENTS & PRE-CODES HAVE YOU SEEN LATELY?

Postby charliechaplinfan » July 5th, 2012, 1:31 pm

feaito wrote:
Ann Harding wrote:
feaito wrote:I have just seen a superbt Precoder: "The Man in Possession" (1931), a MGM film directed by Sam Wood. it's a charming, frothy, risqué comedy and love story, full of nuances and with excellent performances. Robert Montgomery and Irene Purcell make a great team together: they sparkle, have chemistry and give splendid performances. The rest of the cast is very good: Charlotte Greenwood, Reggie Owen, C. Aubrey Smith, Alan Mowbray, Beryl Mercer, Forrester Harvey, etc. A must-see for Pre-Code fans. I wonder why Irene Purcell did not make more pictures or became a well-known movie actress. She certainly had talent, beauty and charm. A must-see.

I am somewhat less enthusiastic than Fernando with this Precoder. Compared to But The Flesh is Weak, I found it more average. The dialogue didn't have the same sparkle and the characters felt rather 'déjà vu'. Sam Wood lacked zest in IMHO. In spite of the excellent Bob Montgomery, I felt a bit bored by the film as a whole. I have seen the remake with Bob Taylor which has about the same faults. I think what sparked my interest in But The Flesh is Weak is the true English wit it contained. This film lacked it desperately...


In spite of liking both films I enjoyed more TMIP than BTFIW.


I watched A Man In Possession I have to confess to Robert Montgomery not being my cup of tea, I don't find him strong enough to carry a lead when up against Norma Shearer or other big name stars so this is a real surprise, he's the star and he's really good, excellent chemistry with Irene Purcell, I'd love to see the gloss that Harlow and Taylor will put on the story but it felt very British, I'm not sure a Harlow/Taylor coupling will have the same feel. Good support from the rest of the cast especially Beryl Mercer.
Failure is unimportant. It takes courage to make a fool of yourself - Charlie Chaplin


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