Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Did Ronald Colman have a thing for Louise Brooks?

"Louise Brooks' eyes are marvelous. They are large and dark brown in color. They fascinate me." So, supposedly, stated Ronald Colman in the November, 1929 issue of Screen Secrets in an article by Bob Moak entitled "Ronald Colman's Dream Girl." What a couple they would have made. For more on this dashing actor, see www.ronaldcolman.com/

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Desperately Seeking Marie Prevost

I like to listen to music while blogging, crawling the web, or working on the LBS website. Today, I listened to Basher: The Best of Nick Lowe. I hadn't listened to it in long time. This Nick Lowe CD contains such great songs as "Cracking Up" and "Cruel to Be Kind" - as well as "Marie Provost." 

The song is about Marie Prevost (Nick Lowe misspells her name). It's lyrics read in part: "Marie Provost was a movie queen / mysterious angel of the silent screen / And run like the wind the nation's young men steamed / When Marie crossed the silent screen." 

It should be noted that Lowe's lyrics inaccurately recount the circumstances around Prevost's premature death, as gleamed from Kenneth Anger's flawed Hollywood Babylon. Don't know why this English pop musician wrote a song about a forgotten movie star, but he did. . . .

Marie Prevost was a Canadian-born film actress. Prevost began her career during the silent film era, and came to fame as a member of Mack Sennett's Bathing Beauties. By all accounts, she was a fine comedic and dramatic actress. During her twenty-year career, she made approximately 120 silent and talking pictures.

 . . . . Speaking of Marie Prevost, there is a new book out on the actress, Desperately Seeking Marie Prevost (BearManor), by Richard Kirby. I recently finished reading it. This slim (104 page), poorly written book takes a look at the life and work of a beautiful, talented and ill-fated actress who was one of Hollywood's biggest stars in the 1920s. Its unfortunate, because Prevost deserves better.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Exploring the Library of Congress photo collections

             

The Library of Congress has an extraordinary collection of images available on-line through its Prints and Photographs division. This database is searchable by keyword, and some of the images are available in high-resolution scans. A search for "Louise Brooks" only turned up one (rather unusual) result. Nevertheless, fans of silent film, theater, dance, etc.... will certainly find other fascinating and seldom seen images. There are thousands of scans available from more than four dozen collections. Try searching under keywords or names such as "actress," "Ziegfeld," "Ruth St. Denis," "Rudolph Valentino," "Charlie Chaplin," etc....

                                  

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Suicide or Lulu and Me in a World Made for Two

Presented here is the trailer for the feature film Suicide or Lulu and Me in a World Made for Two - a black comedy science fiction story about obsession, madness and what one man will do to attain perceived happiness. The film stars Adeline Thery, Christian Carroll and Brian Shoop. The cinematography was done by Alexander Drecun. The trailer is set to the music of Margaret Leng Tan.


From the filmmakers: "Loosely inspired by the Argentinean sci-fi novella, 'The Invention of Morel', by Adolfo Boy Casares, this is the story of a young loner named Jorge who has created two inventions: Pandora's Camera, which can duplicate and preserve reality, and a pair of glasses that can inject memories into the viewer's mind."

"Using the camera, Jorge attempts to capture and preserve a perfect moment of happiness between him and his lover in Paris. The story is told through the eyes of Louise, Jorge's lover, as she begins to question the true nature of their relationship and reality. Ultimately it is a film about obsession, in the guise of a sci-fi black comedy. The boyish 'american in paris pursuing his sweet amour' mood at the film's outset is thrown on its head as the movie's big surprise takes you on a dark journey indeed!"

Suicide or Lulu and Me in a World Made for Two was written, directed, edited, scored and produced by Christian Carroll, who also plays the inventor Jorge, it is a work of imagination shot in a black and white Nouvelle Vague style with nods to the silent movies of Louise Brooks. More info at www.suicidethefilm.com/

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Come on - let's do this! Nominate the Louise Brooks' film Beggars of Life for the National Film Registry

The United States Congress established the National Film Registry in 1988. Along with mandating the continuing implementation of a plan to save America's film heritage, the law authorizes the Librarian of Congress to select up to 25 films each year for inclusion in the Registry. The 625 films chosen to date illustrate the vibrant diversity of American film-making.


The Library of Congress is currently seeking nominations from the public - meaning you! Public nominations play a key role when the Librarian of Congress and Film Board are considering their selections. To be eligible for the Registry, a film must be at least 10 years old and be “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant.” Recommendations are due in September. New selections are usually announced at the end of December.

Attention Louise Brooks fans. Attention silent film fans. Attention William Wellman fans. Attention Jim Tully fans. The  Louise Brooks Society thinks its time a Louise Brooks film be added to the list. The LBS suggests you recommend these Louise Brooks films. Each are worthy of inclusion in the registry:

Beggars of Life (1928)



The Street of Forgotten Men (1925)


The Show Off (1926)


A Girl in Every Port (1928)



Looking for other films to nominate? Check here for hundreds of titles not yet selected to the National Film Registry. Please include the date of the film nominated, and number your recommendations. And if you would, tell how you learned of the Registry. Please forward your recommendations via email to dross@loc.gov  Email is preferred; to submit via postal mail, send your nominations to:

National Film Registry
Library of Congress
Packard Campus for Audio Visual Conservation
19053 Mt. Pony Road
Culpeper, VA 22701
Attn: Donna Ross

Friday, July 18, 2014

Cool pic of the Day: Louise Brooks in a bathing suite

Cool pic of the Day: Louise Brooks in a bathing suite

Thursday, July 17, 2014

The Ghosts of Hollywood

This short documentary titled "The Ghosts of Hollywood" shows the sad condition of many of the silent movie studios in Hollywood as they appeared in the 1930s. Included are the Keystone and Metro Studio locations. You see Mabel Normand and Rudolph Valentino's dressing rooms among other locations.

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