College 1927

college

Brilliant in his studies and dismissive of athletics, Ronald (Buster Keaton) finishes high school at the top of his class. But in college his uptight attitude doesn’t win him any points with his sports-loving classmates, and pretty coed Mary (Anne Cornwall) ignores him in favor of brutish jock Jeff (Harold Goodwin). Hoping to impress Mary, Ronald makes a buffoon of himself at every sport imaginable, usually at Jeff’s hand. But Ronald gets a final shot at glory in a big rowing race.

Directors: Buster Keaton, James W. Horne
Screenplay: Bryan Foy
Producer: Joseph M. Schenck
Cinematography: Devereaux Jennings, Bert Haines

Stars:Buster Keaton, Anne Cornwall, Flora Bramley

Judex 1916

judex-1

Judex is the title of a 1916 silent 12 part French film serial concerning the adventures of Judex, who is a pulp hero, similar to The Shadow, created by Louis Feuillade and Arthur Bernède.

The video below covers the entire serial including the prologue and epilogue

 

Story Line:- A mysterious avenger identifying himself only as Judex – “Justice” – threatens successful banker Favraux (Louis Leubas) with ruin if he doesn’t repent his crimes and give half his fortune to charity. A vagrant ex-con named Kerjean (Gaston Michel) appears, also demanding redress from Favraux; Kerjean was one of thousands bilked by Favraux’s shady financial schemes. Although Favraux hires amusing detective Cocantin (Marcel Lévesque) for protection, Judex claims the banker will die precisely at 10PM if his demands aren’t carried out. Favraux’s widowed daughter Jaqueline (Yvette Andréyor) knows nothing of his crimes and only wants to be happy with her tiny son Jean (Olinda Mano), but she’ll soon prove her character by abandoning her father’s ill-gotten gains. Hovering around the Favraux millions are opportunistic thieves and schemers Robert Moralés (Jean Devalde) and Diana Monti (Musidora), who has gone so far as to assume a false identity to work in Favraux’s castle. And somewhere in the shadows lurks the mysterious Judex, offering Jaqueline protection from kidnappers and extortionists.

Director: Louis Feuillade
Writers: Arthur Bernède, Louis Feuillade
Stars: René Cresté, Musidora, René Poyen

 

 

Quo vadis 1912

quo-vadis

Quo Vadis? is a 1913 film directed by Enrico Guazzoni, based on the 1896 novel of the same name. It was arguably the first blockbuster in the history of cinema, with 5,000 extras, lavish sets, and a running time of two hours, setting the standard for “superspectacles” for decades to come.

A worldwide success, it was the first film to be projected in a first-class Broadway theater, where it was screened for nine months from April to December 1913. The film’s first screening in London was for King George V, who complimented the performers. Another Italian director, Giovanni Pastrone, would direct Cabiria (1914) – which holds many similarities with Quo Vadis, but is longer, more thematically complex, and visually spectacular.

Director: Enrico Guazzoni
Writers: Henryk Sienkiewicz (novel), Enrico Guazzoni
Stars: Amleto Novelli, Gustavo Serena, Amelia Cattaneo

Body and Soul 1925

body-and-soul

Written and directed by independent auteur Oscar Micheaux, the low-budget silent film Body and Soul is significant as the film debut of actor Paul Robeson. He leads the largely African-American cast as the Reverend Isaiah T. Jenkins, a minister who lies, cheats, and steals. He’s really an escaped convict and con artist posing as a Reverend. Even though he takes his flask with him to church, his followers believe in him. An upstanding member of the congregation, Martha Jane (Julia Theresa Russell), encourages her daughter, Isabelle (Mercedes Gilbert), to accept him as a suitor. Meanwhile, Jenkins’ poor but honest twin brother Sylvester (also Robeson) also courts Isabelle as well. Inevitably, the bad twin Jenkins steals Isabelle’s life savings and she flees to Atlanta. The National Board of Review disapproved of a clergyman as an evil character and Micheaux was running out of money, so the conclusion is a tacked-on it was all just a dream ending.~ Andrea LeVasseur, All Movie Guide

Director: Oscar Micheaux
Writers: Oscar Micheaux (novel), Oscar Micheaux (screenplay)
Stars: Paul Robeson, Marshall Rogers, Lawrence Chenault

 

Life of an American Fireman 1903

 

life-of-an-american-fireman

“Life of an American Fireman” is a short, silent film Edwin S. Porter made for the Edison Manufacturing Company. It was shot late in 1902 and distributed early in 1903. One of the earliest American narrative films, it depicts the rescue of a woman and child from a burning building.

Life of an American Fireman is notable for its synthesis of numerous innovations in film technique that had occurred in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Specifically, Porter builds a continuous narrative over seven scenes, rendered in a total of nine shots:

1.The Fireman’s Vision of an Imperilled [sic] Woman and Child.
2.A Close View of a New York Fire Alarm Box.
3.The Interior of the Sleeping Quarters in the Fire House.
4.Interior of the Engine House.
5.The Apparatus Leaving the Engine House.
6.Off to the Fire.
7.The Arrival at the Fire.

This particular construction of time and space was not invented by Porter, but he did maximize its use and further develop it in his more famous film of 1903, The Great Train Robbery. Charles Musser, a film scholar, points out that this film represents the social role of firefighters was changing at the time.

The film was long considered important for its unusual editing style, being considered the earliest example of cross-cutting, notably during the final scenes of the rescue of the woman and her child. On the basis of this, Porter was hailed as an innovative editor. However, subsequent research by the paper print project at the Library of Congress suggested that the cross-cut version was re-edited at some unspecified time after the film’s 1903 release, and that in its original form it used few, if any, of the pioneering edits claimed. As originally released, the interior point of view of the burning house is shown first and completed. Then the exact same action repeating itself is shown again from the exterior. Charles Musser has chronicled the history of this controversy in Before the Nickelodeon and concluded that the paper-print version containing the repetitive action was the one released in 1903.

Edwin Stanton Porter (April 21, 1870 — April 30, 1941) was an American early film pioneer, most famous as a director with Thomas Edison’s company.[ Of over 250 films created by Porter, the most important films include Life of an American Fireman (1903) and The Great Train Robbery (1903).
Resources: wikipedia.org, archive.org, imdb.com
New soundtrack and dubbing: TheGreatClassics
Music: Kevin Mac Leod (incompetch.com) licensed under Creative Commons licence: Attribution 3.0 Unported (CC BY 3.0).

The Hayseed 1919

the-hayseed

The Hayseed is a 1919 American short comedy film directed by and starring Fatty Arbuckle. Wikipedia
Initial release: October 26, 1919
Director: Roscoe Arbuckle
Cinematography: Elgin Lessley
Written by: Jean Havez
Distributed by: Paramount Pictures
Cast: Buster Keaton, Roscoe Arbuckle

Back to God’s Country 1919

back-t0-gods-country

IMDB 7.0

A woman finds herself all alone in a remote harbor with the man responsible for the murder of her father. With seemingly nobody around to protect her, she has to be resourceful.
Director: David Hartford
Writers: , James Oliver Curwood (adopted from his novel “Wapi the Walrus” in Good Housekeeping Magazine)
Stars: Nell Shipman, Charles Arling, Wheeler Oakman