Final Post

This is my final post as I am off to the hospital once again for more Chemo and it’s needles to the left, needles to the right, staring into the valley of death dreaming of nurses in white clad uniforms

I am tired,very tired

Tired of hospitals

Tired of doctors

Tired of nurses

Tired of needles

Tired of chemo

Tired of life

I am tired, very tired and that’s it

Enough, let’s get it over with

 

Well in truth it  ain’t all that bad and with luck my blood counts will come back up I be singing

(Fame) I’m gonna live forever
I’m gonna learn how to fly (High)
I feel it coming together

Ah, ha,ha all horseshit of course, me and the Grim Reaper are on the best of terms, would I dream of cheating him. Why I even share a drink with him now and again

absolut17_350.jpg

However for now,this site is going into hibernation but who knows the the phoenix may rise again?

 

To all my readers and followers a sincere thanks for visiting my site. To those who have added comments a thank you for sharing your opinions, knowledge and humour.

To those whose blogs I followed please continue the good work.

Thank you all and Cheers

And may all your endings be happy

Image result for the end

Jack Mulhall

Silent Room

JACK MJack Mulhall is probably not a name that springs to mind when buffs talk about silent films, yet he appeared in hundreds of silent films. He never really became a major star like John Gilbert or Rudolph Valentino, but he served as leading man to many of the era’s biggest female stars.

Mulhall was a mainstay of First National/Warner Bothers films for many years, where he appeared in 13 films with Dorothy Mackaill. He also appeared in films with Gloria Swanson, Colleen Moore, Marion Davies, Constance Talmadge, Norma Talmadge, Mae Murray, Blanche Sweet, Bebe Daniels, May McAvoy, Madge Bellamy, Viola Dana, Marie Prevost, Alice White, Billie Dove, Mabel Normand, Corinne Griffith, and (going back to 1910) with Mary Pickford.

Jack Mulhall got his first sizable role in The Fugitive (1910), a Civil War drama directed by D.W. Griffith. That same year he appeared in Sunshine Sue and A Child’s Stratagem

View original post 799 more words

Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde (1912)

Mark David Welsh

Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde (1912)‘Help! Help! That monster Hyde is in my master’s study!’

Keen to prove his theories on the duality of human nature, Dr Jekyll experiments on himself with untested drugs and transforms into his deadly alter-ego, Mr Hyde. The monster runs rampant, but the police are quickly closing in…

Robert Louis Stevenson’s cautionary tale of addiction and dodgy pharmaceuticals first hit the movie screen as a filmed stage play in 1908, a version now lost. Many silent adaptations followed and there seems to be some confusion among commentators as to which order they arrived in! However, it seems pretty clear that this short, made for the Nickelodeon circuit, is the oldest surviving example. Nickelodeons were small theatres located in local neighbourhoods that showed single-reel subjects like this 12-minute dash through the classic story’s highlights.

The film begins with a shot of Jekyll’s chosen text for a discussion with a colleague. This…

View original post 512 more words

Le charmeur 1907

 

Image result for Le charmeur 1907

A Brahman stuffs a serpent into a cocoon, and a butterfly woman comes out. She makes more butterflies come out of the same cocoon till a whole crowd of them are swarming the jungle. When the Brahman tries to catch the queen she turns him into the serpent who slinks off into the jungle.

—Tornado_Sam

Director: Segundo de Chomón

Director: Segundo de Chomón

10 lost silent films that I’d love to see

Silents, Please!

As an art form, silent film lasted for a mere 40 years, c.1895-1935. It’s well known that the great majority of films from the silent era are now lost, whether due to destruction (either deliberate, as by many studios, or accidental, as the famous Fox fire of 1937), deterioration, or simple indifference and neglect. Survival percentages vary by country; Imperial Russia fares quite well, with about a sixth of the total production surviving1, whereas it is estimated that less that 5% of Japanese silent film production is extant2; in Australia, less than 10%.3  India has one of the worst film survival rates of all countries; of the 1700 silent films made in India, only 5 or 6 survive complete, with another 10 or 12 in fragments.4

As for the US, in 2013 a detailed study on American feature films was undertaken by David Pierce (also known…

View original post 2,782 more words

Feature The Clown (Klovnen) 1917

In this love story, set in Paris, the successful circus clown Joe falls in love with Daisy, a dancer.

Image result for The Clown (Klovnen) 1917

Essay by Shari Kizirian

Alone in the center ring, a white-faced clown sings. Rather than making the crowd laugh, he draws tears. This trope is as familiar today as it was in cinema’s earliest days, when the circus and the cinema were more closely linked. According to Italian scholar Carlo Piccardi, “In its first decade the cinema had installed itself in carnivals, sharing its wonderful performances with the coarse spectacles presented by jugglers, acrobats and clowns. It was an often vulgar spectacle among even more vulgar spectacles….”

But unlike cinema, the clown’s lineage is ancient. Since ridiculing humanity’s foibles in Greek, Roman, and medieval literature, the clown has diversified into several distinct stock characters whose origins have been subsumed over time. From Pagliacci to Chaplin’s Little Tramp, from Bozo to Crusty, the clown in all its variety continually pops up in our literature, on our stages, and in our moving images. The white-faced version was first introduced as Pedrolino, in the Italian commedia dell’arte, and popularized in France in the 16th and 17th centuries as Pierrot. At Paris’s Théâtre des Funambules, an innovative Bohemian émigré with the naturalized name of Jean-Gaspard Deburau dressed in baggy white clothes and silently, sometimes violently, mooned over Columbine, introducing mid-19th century Europe to the lovesick clown. The absinthe-soaked poets of the Romantic period like Verlaine transformed him from pathetic to demented in a few stanzas. Russian playwright Leonid Andreyev set the 20th century bar to the grotesque with 1919’s He Who Gets Slapped, about the slighted clown out for revenge. Victor Sjöström and Tod Browning via their changeling Lon Chaney brought the new, mad clown to an international audience.

A.W. Sandberg’s The Golden Clown fits somewhere between the lovelorn and the macabre, its story mirroring in many ways that of the real-life Deburau, or at least his myth. Working the hinterlands in a tight-knit, family-owned circus in France, Joe Higgins (Gösta Ekman) plays a version of Pierrot, surprising the local crowd with his talent by singing a sad and beautiful song inspired by his love for the circus owner’s daughter. A Somebody from the Big City happens to be in the audience and the clown goes from sideshow to star in an instant, changing the entire family’s fate. They are thrust into the high life of Jazz Age Paris. Swanky hotels, fine dining, and all the couture money can buy are not enough, and the clown’s once easy-to-please girl, finally his wife, seeks out other urbane pleasures. (The real-life Deburau’s trouble began when he murdered a man who insulted his wife. Crowds turned out for his trial to hear the great mime finally speak. Marcel Carné later told a version of his story in 1945’s The Children of Paradise.)

Shot in Denmark and France, the film is beautifully photographed by Chresten Jørgensen, with imagery ranging from naturalistic landscapes in the countryside to stunning modernist sets on the Paris stage. But The Golden Clown might owe its visual flair more to its director, a former press photographer who started at Nordisk as a cameraman in 1914. Anders Wilhelm Sandberg’s career then followed the highs and lows of the Copenhagen-based studio where he worked most of his professional life.

During the years from 1910 to 1916, Nordisk produced 736 fiction films and Danish movies became synonymous with the salacious—and box-office gold. Beginning with The White Slave and Asta Nielsen’s racy star turn in Afgrunden, Danish exports kept movie censors busy around the world. “From no other country is there sent out such a dung-heap of improper and morally damaging film as from Denmark,” one small-town editor complained in 1913.

Similar films were fertilizer for Nordisk’s fortunes and, before World War I, the studio had a sales presence on every continent and began spending money on higher production values, location shoots, big-name actors, and literary adaptations. In July 1918, the Danish author and screenwriter Aage Barfoed exhorted the film industry to follow a neighbor’s example: “Sweden has accomplished the feat of creating a distinctive film genre. Now it is our turn, if we want to make our mark in the world market. And what is to be done? One thing! We must imprint our films, like all art, with Danish distinctiveness … Our literature, our painting, our music has a rich, a deep and genuine cultural tone. Seize that and make it come alive on the screen!”

Sandberg soon became Nordisk’s leading director, having come up on comedy shorts and detective serials (five installments of The Man with Nine Fingers). His breakthrough film, 1917’s Klovnen (The Clown), starred Denmark’s renowned Valdemar Psilander, whose prodigious output totaled 83 films before he committed suicide at age 32. Released two months after Psilander’s death, the original Klovnen was an enormous hit. The studio then gave Sandberg free rein to adapt Dickens novels, which film historian Graham Petrie says were the director’s true passion. He made Our Mutual Friend (1921), David Copperfield (1922), Great Expectations (1922), and Little Dorrit (1924). Britain’s Pall Mall and Globe Gazette called Our Mutual Friend “worthy representation of one of our best classics,” but the cost of these faithful screen versions became too much for the now ailing studio. A world economy, crippled in the aftermath of war, coupled with disappointing receipts ended Sandberg’s run of lavish adaptations.

In an attempt to resuscitate Nordisk’s former vitality, the studio reverted to the tried and true. Remakes now filled Sandberg’s schedule, including Klovnen, this time with Swedish import Gösta Ekman in the lead role, Danish diva Karina Bell as his sweetheart, and, playing her father, Maurice de Féraudy, who had made his name in Comédie-Française, cast, no doubt, with an eye to the French market. The film itself is steeped in nostalgia, eulogizing in sweet, reverent tones the tranquil days of touring the French countryside in a horse-drawn wagon. Success and city life tear all that asunder, of course, and the parallel to Sandberg’s own rise and fall must have added some personal poignancy to what turned out to be the director’s last Nordisk film.
He left for Berlin, making a couple films there for Terra, working again with some of his old colleagues: cameraman Jørgensen, scriptwriter Poul Knudsen, and stars Bell and Ekman. Talkie assignments came in stutters, his directing career petering out in 1937. According to the biography provided by the Danish Film Institute, he died in 1938 at a spa in Bad Nauheim, Germany, after a long illness. Assessing Sandberg’s films in 1944, critic Harald Engberg surmised that the director’s style had served him well in Nordisk’s heyday but it might have kept him from greatness. While praising him for his craftsmanship, sensitivity, and “photographic superiority,” Engberg thought he simply did not have the stuff of fellow Danes Carl Dreyer and Benjamin Christensen. “He was not a rebel and experimenter,” concluded Engberg, “and altogether prey to the tastes of his time.”

The white-faced clown, on the other hand, has endured, albeit as permutations that suit the time and the creator. Marcel Carne politicized him in The Children of Paradise. Jean-Luc Godard modernized him in Pierrot le fou. Christopher Nolan eulogized him in The Dark Knight. But we’ve not seen his end—his appeal at once his venerable ancestry and his eternal capacity for renewa

Director: A.W. Sandberg
Writers: A.W. Sandberg, Laurids Skands
Stars: Valdemar Psilander, Gudrun Houlberg, Peter Fjelstrup

 

or with added English subtitles