Saturday, October 21, 2017

Book face with Louise Brooks (and F.Scott Fitzgerald)

If you look through YouTube and Vimeo, you'll find a bunch of book face clips. It's where an individual will place a book (featuring a portrait or face on its cover) over their own face in order to create a new collage image.

Here is a screen capture of one such book face. It features a French edition of the F. Scott Fitzgerald story, "Berenice Bobs Her Hair," with Louise Brooks' bangs and eyes on its cover. This screen capture comes from a video on a French news website.


Thursday, October 19, 2017

Diary of a Lost Girl with Louise Brooks screens in Helsinki, Finland on October 19 and 21

The National Audiovisual Institute (KAVI) in Helsinki, Finland will screen Diary of a Lost Girl on October 19 and 21, 2017 as part of their ongoing Louise Brooks series.

Brooks is the focus of the four film series at the country’s National Audiovisual Institute, which is set to show Beggars of Life on October 12 and 15, Diary of a Lost Girl (Kadotetun päiväkirja) on October 19 and 21, Prix de beaute (Miss Europa) on October 27 and 29, and Pandora’s Box (Pandoran lipas) on November 27 and December 1.

Here is some further information from the KAVI site. Times and ticket availability for each film may be found HERE.
Louise Brooks, kimaltava tähdenlento
12.10.2017 - 01.12.2017

Louise Brooksin elokuvauraa voi luonnehtia tähdenlennoksi, sillä hänen aktiivinen elokuvauransa kesti vain vuosikymmenen. Parhaimmat elokuvansa hän teki Euroopassa G. W. Pabstin kanssa. Hollywoodin Brooks jätti sopimusrikkojana, eikä paluu unelmatehtaaseen enää onnistunut.

The following is from the KAVI website:



Ohjaaja: G. W. Pabst
Henkilöt: Louise Brooks, Fritz Rasp, Josef Rovenský, Sybille Schmitz, Valeska Gert
Maa: Saksa
Tekstitykset: suom. tekstit (E)
Ikäraja: K12
Kesto: 113 min
Teemat: LOUISE BROOKS
Kopiotieto: restauroitu laitos FWMS 1997
Lisätieto: Margarete Böhmen romaanista • piano Ilari Hannula
G. W. Pabstin Kadotetun päiväkirjassa (Das Tagebuch einer Verlorenen, 1929) Louise Brooks esittää viatonta tyttöä, joka saa lapsen raiskauksen seurauksena. Perhe keskittyy varjelemaan mainettaan, hylkää tytön kasvatuslaitokseen ja antaa lapsen pois. Tyttö kuitenkin karkaa ja päätyy elättämään itseään ainoaksi jäävällä vaihtoehdolla. Moraliteetti ottaa kantaa paremman luokan hurskasteluun ja näkee hyveen ”syntisissä”.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Some more new and recommended books on film: Paramount, Fox, comedies and SEX

Ahead of a longer review, here are a few more new books I wish to recommend to fans of Louise Brooks as well as those interested in the silent and early sound film era. Each title provides valuable background information about the era in which Brooks was active, and each mentions or touches on the actress and her career. Each book can be found on amazon.com and elsewhere.

100 Essential Silent Film Comedies (Rowman & Littlefield)
by James Roots

"From the moment films were first produced, comedy has been a key feature of cinema. From just before the turn of the twentieth century until the early 1930s, audiences celebrated the brilliant humor of cinematic clowns who left their marks forever. We still remember—and laugh at—the hilarious antics of Laurel and Hardy, Buster Keaton, Harold Lloyd, and many others.

In 100 Essential Silent Film Comedies James Roots identifies the major comedic motion pictures produced in the first few decades of the twentieth century. With a lucid and lively style, Roots takes a look at more than 400 silent comedies and narrows the list to 100 that viewers should consider. Each entry includes cast and crew information, a synopsis, critical evaluation, and additional commentary—all to demonstrate why that particular film is essential viewing. The films range from 70 seconds to full-length features and even include some of the earliest produced films, starting in 1894. In addition to citing Hollywood’s finest, the book profiles comedies from around the world, including selections from the United Kingdom, France, Japan and Russia.

More than seventy silent comedians from Charlie Chaplin to Max Linder are represented in these selections, and the book celebrates such established classics as The General and Safety Last—as well as relatively obscure one-reelers. Including information about DVD availability, 100 Essential Silent Film Comedies is an invaluable resource that provides both scholars and general film fans a list of entertaining films to explore.

James Roots is Executive Director of the Canadian Association of the Deaf. A book reviewer for more than twenty years, he has written frequently on silent film, especially comedy. He is the author of The 100 Greatest Silent Film Comedians (Rowman & Littlefield, 2014)."

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Paramount: City of Dreams (Taylor)
by Steven Bingen

"Paramount: City of Dreams brings to life the operations of the world’s grandest movie lot as never before by opening its famous gates and revealing – for the first time – the wonderful myriad of soundstages and outdoor sets where, for one hundred years, Paramount has produced the world’s most famous films. With hundreds and hundreds of rare and unpublished photographs in color and black & white, readers are launched aboard a fun and entertaining “virtual tour” of Hollywood’s first, most famous and most mysterious motion picture studio. Paramount is a self-contained city. But unlike any community in the real world, this city’s streets and lawns, its bungalows and backlots, will be familiar even to those who have never been there. Now, for the first time, these much-filmed, much-haunted acres will be explored and the mysteries and myths peeled away – bringing into focus the greatest of all of Hollywood’s legendary dream factories.

Steven Bingen has long worked within the motion picture industry, both in production and as a writer and historian. He held a staff position at Warner Bros. Corporate Archive - aiding in the preservation and management of the studios legend and legacy. He is an author of "MGM: Hollywood's Greatest Backlot," "Warner Bros: Hollywood's Ultimate Backlot," "Paramount: City of Dreams," and "Warner Bros. The Stuff That Dreams Are Made Of" and has contributed to many books and documentaries. His numerous essays and magazine articles include recent pieces for "Filmfax," "Mondo Cult," "Cinema Retro" and "Perspective." "The Ghastly Love of Johnny X" for which he wrote the screenplay for director Paul Bunnell, was released in 2012."

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Twentieth Century Fox: A Century of Entertainment (Lyons Press)
by Michael Troyan

"Here it is: the first-time look at the remarkable American multinational mass media empire and its century of entertainment—the story of Twentieth Century Fox (1915–2015). Or, to borrow the title of a classic 1959 Fox film, The Best of Everything. This is the complete revelatory story—bookended by empire builders William Fox and Rupert Murdoch—aimed as both a grand, entertaining, nostalgic and picture-filled interactive read and the ultimate guide to all things Twentieth Century Fox. The controversies and scandals are here, as are the extraordinary achievements. Among other firsts, the book offers fun tours of its historic production and ranch facilities including never-before-told stories about its stars and creative personalities (Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley, James Dean, and Shirley Temple got started there). Finally, it is the first such work approved by the company and utilizing its own unique resources. The authors primarily tell a celebratory tale, but most importantly, an accurate one.

Michael Troyan has worked as an archivist at the Walt Disney and Warner Bros. studios as well as a consultant and film historian elsewhere. He is the author of A Rose For Mrs. Miniver: The Life of Greer Garson, and has contributed to numerous books about Hollywood, and particularly Disney, history. He lives in Northern California. Stephen Sylvester is the former head of Hollywood Heritage and a member of the Friends of Fox. Besides combing the company’s archives as never before, Sylvester also has ongoing interviews with dozens of Fox employees past and present, celebrating every aspect of its motion picture making."
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Sex In the Cinema: The Pre-Code Years (1929-1934) (BearManor)
by Lou Sabini (Author)

"Hollywood movies in the 1920s depicted sex, violence, and alcohol and drug abuse with freewheeling abandon, but filmmaking freedom halted with the mysterious murder of director William Desmond Taylor, the drug death of writer-director-actor Wallace Reid, and the rape trials of Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle. Hollywood had to choose self-censorship or face the moral indignation of the law. They chose to manage movie madcaps themselves. Will H. Hays, President of the Motion Picture Producers and Distributors of America (MPPDA) from 1922 to 1945, prescribed the Production Code in 1930 and began strictly enforcing it in 1934. The Production Code spelled out a set of moral guidelines that were popularly known as the Hays Code. For decades, moviemaking was never the same.

Rediscover 107 spicy films from the Pre-code era, including Stolen Heaven (1931), The Night of June 13th (1932), Three on a Match (1932), Red-Headed Woman (1932), Call Her Savage (1932), This Reckless Age (1932), Young Bride (1932), Panama Flo (1932), and Baby Face (1933). Relive the fabled faces of these fiery films, such as Barbara Stanwyck, Norma Shearer, Jean Harlow, Bette Davis, Greta Garbo, James Cagney, Clark Gable, Edward G. Robinson, Wallace Beery, Carole Lombard, Frances Dee, Chester Morris, and Sylvia Sidney, as well as directors Frank Capra, Rouben Mamoulian, James Whale, William Wellman, Michael Curtiz, William Wyler, and W. S. Van Dyke. Author Lou Sabini points his comprehensive spotlight on the often forgotten yet always fascinating films that dared depict violence, drugs, and sex with a sinful flair. 107 films profiled. Illustrated with 178 rare photographs and memorabilia from the world’s archives. Complete casts, credits, production history, and biographical profiles of the stars, director, writers, and cameramen.

About the author: Lou Sabini attended the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan, later teaching and lecturing about film. He is the author of Behind the Scenes of They Were Expendable."

Sunday, October 15, 2017

TODAY: Beggars of Life screens in Helsinki, Finland

The National Audiovisual Institute (KAVI) in Helsinki, Finland will screen Beggars of Life on October 15, 2017 as the opening film in their ongoing Louise Brooks series.

Brooks is the focus of the four film series at the country’s National Audiovisual Institute, which is set to show Beggars of Life on October 12 and 15, Diary of a Lost Girl (Kadotetun päiväkirja) on October 19 and 21, Prix de beaute (Miss Europa) on October 27 and 29, and Pandora’s Box (Pandoran lipas) on November 27 and December 1.

Here is some further information from the KAVI site. Times and ticket availability may be found HERE.
Louise Brooks, kimaltava tähdenlento
12.10.2017 - 01.12.2017

Louise Brooksin elokuvauraa voi luonnehtia tähdenlennoksi, sillä hänen aktiivinen elokuvauransa kesti vain vuosikymmenen. Parhaimmat elokuvansa hän teki Euroopassa G. W. Pabstin kanssa. Hollywoodin Brooks jätti sopimusrikkojana, eikä paluu unelmatehtaaseen enää onnistunut.

The following is from the KAVI website:


Ohjaaja: William A. Wellman
Henkilöt: Wallace Beery, Louise Brooks, Richard Arlen
Maa: USA
Kesto: 81 min
Teemat: LOUISE BROOKS
Kopiotieto: restauroitu laitos (2010)
Lisätieto: piano Ilari Hannula
William Wellmanin mestariteoksessa Beggars of Life (1928) pojaksi naamioitunut Louise Brooks pakenee murhasyytettä maankiertäjien seurassa. Vaiherikkaalla matkalla määritellään lopulta myös rakkaus, kun kovakasvoinen Oklaholma Red näkee totuuden: “I’ve heard about it – but I never seen it before. It must be love.”

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Pandora's Box, starring Louise Brooks, set to screen in Chicago in April, 2018

Pandora's Box, the sensational 1929 film starring Louise Brooks, is set to screen in Chicago, Illinois on April 3, 2018. The movie will be accompanied live by Jay Warren, Chicago's foremost pipe organ expert, on the classically restored 3/16 Marr Colton / Geneva Arcada organ.


The film will be shown at the Arcada Theatre, 105 E. Main St. in St. Charles, as part of its continuing  "Silent Film Night" series featuring silent film classics. More information about the event can be found HERE.

The theater kicks off the series with a Halloween season screening of the F.W. Murnau horror film Nosferatu: A Symphony of Horror (1922), starring Max Schreck, Greta Schroder and Gustav Von Wangenheim, on October 16th.

On November 7, the Douglas Fairbanks adventure film The Mark of Zorro (1920) will be shown. It will be followed on December 5 by Charlie Chaplin's early comedy Tillie's Punctured Romance (1914), with Mabel Normand and Marie Dressler.

Next year, on January 9, the 1916 film based on Jules Verne's 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, the first movie filmed underwater, will be shown. It will be followed by Rudolph Valentino's romantic drama The Sheik (1921) on February 6, Lon Chaney's crime drama The Penalty (1920) on March 6, and the German melodrama Pandora's Box (1929), featuring Louise Brooks, April 3. The film series is held select Tuesdays at 7:30 p.m.

As Louise Brooks once lived in Chicago (briefly), and as the Arcada Theatre sells German pretzels, beer and brats, this promised to be a fun event. 

Friday, October 13, 2017

Diary of a Lost Girl, starring Louise Brooks, shows in NYC on October 14

Following a recent screening of Pandora's Box in NYC, it has now been announced that... Diary of a Lost Girl, starring Louise Brooks, will be shown at Film Forum in New York City on October 14 with live piano accompaniment by Steve Sterner. Start time is 3:10 pm. Further information and ticket availability may be found HERE.

From the Film Forum website: "(1929, G.W. Pabst) Louise Brooks is the “lost girl” wronged by circumstances and cast off first into a reformatory, then a Berlin brothel, where she’s spiritually and emotionally liberated. DCP. Approx. 112 min."

 “An elegant narrative of moral musical chairs... not only plays on who holds what kind of legitimate place in society, but is also a starkly direct view of inter-war Germany.”
– Time Out (London)

“Brooks exudes a hypnotic resilience, retaining a transcendent moral decency in a corrupt world.” – Philip French, The Guardian

Those who attend this event, or or thinking of attending this event, may want to check out the book that inspired the film, Margarete Bohme's controversial The Diary of a Lost Girl. In 2010, the Louise Brooks Society published the "Louise Brooks edition" of The Diary of a Lost Girl. This annotated and illustrated edition of Bohme's book features a lengthy introduction by LBS director Thomas Gladysz.
The 1929 Louise Brooks film, Diary of a Lost Girl, is based on a controversial and bestselling book first published in Germany in 1905. Though little known today, it was a literary sensation at the beginning of the 20th century. By the end of the 1920s, it had been translated into 14 languages and sold more than 1,200,000 copies - ranking it among the bestselling books of its time.

Was it - as many believed - the real-life diary of a young woman forced by circumstance into a life of prostitution? Or a sensational and clever fake, one of the first novels of its kind? This contested work - a work of unusual historical significance as well as literary sophistication - inspired a sequel, a play, a parody, a score of imitators, and two silent films. The best remembered of these is the oft revived G.W. Pabst film starring Louise Brooks.

This corrected and annotated edition of the original English language translation brings this important book back into print after more than 100 years. It includes an introduction by Thomas Gladysz, Director of the Louise Brooks Society, detailing the book's remarkable history and relationship to the 1929 silent film. This special "Louise Brooks Edition" also includes more than three dozen vintage illustrations.
"Long relegated to the shadows, Margarete Böhme's 1905 novel, The Diary of a Lost Girl has at last made a triumphant return. In reissuing the rare 1907 English translation of Böhme's German text, Thomas Gladysz makes an important contribution to film history, literature, and, in as much as Böhme told her tale with much detail and background contemporary to the day, sociology and history. He gives us the original novel, his informative introduction, and many beautiful and rare illustrations. This reissue is long overdue, and in all ways it is a volume of uncommon merit." - Richard Buller, author of A Beautiful Fairy Tale: The Life of Actress Lois Moran

"Read today, it's a fascinating time-trip back to another age, and yet remains compelling. As a bonus, Gladysz richly illustrates the text with stills of Brooks from the famous film." - Jack Garner, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle

"In today's parlance this would be called a movie tie-in edition, but that seems a rather glib way to describe yet another privately published work that reveals an enormous amount of research and passion." - Leonard Maltin, Movie Crazy

"Thomas Gladysz is the leading authority on all matters pertaining to the legendary Louise Brooks. We owe him a debt of gratitude for bringing the groundbreaking novel, The Diary of a Lost Girl, back from obscurity." -- Lon Davis, author of Silent Lives
"It was such a pleasure to come upon your well documented and beautifully presented edition." -- Elizabeth Boa, Professor at the University of Nottingham

The "Louise Brooks edition" of The Diary of a Lost Girl is available on amazon.com and at the George Eastman Museum gift shop in Rochester, New York and wherever better books are sold.

Thomas Gladysz also contributed the audio commentary to the 2015 Kino Lorber DVD / Blu-ray release of the film. Like his book, it too can be found on amazon.com and elsewhere.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Beggars of Life, with Louise Brooks, screens one month from today in Brooklyn

Beggars of Life (1928), starring Louise Brooks, screens one month from today in Brooklyn, New York. Here are the details.





Those who check out the film may well want to check-out my new book, Beggars of Life: A Companion to the 1928 Film, available at select independent bookstores throughout New York City.


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