6 items from 2013
Welcome back to The Stack! This week we're dividing the show into two separate episodes so I can finally catch up from Fantastic Fest. Look for October 8 releases to be covered on Wednesday October 9. In the mean time enjoy this reminder of what hit home entertainment October 1. Highlights for me were the final emergence of House of Wax (1955) on 3D Blu-ray. It has all the awesome extras the outstanding DVD did including the 1933 version of Mystery of the Wax Museum starring Lionel Atwill. Thanks Warner Bros. The Croods surprised me by being one of the best animated films of the year. Funny, heartwarming and absolutely gorgeous to look at. Thanks Dreamworks. Lastly the 1925 anti-war effort The Big Parade is beautifully...
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Do you remember the last time you cried at a movie? I mean, had to stop the film for a few minutes just to recover kind of crying? I had that experience watching King Vidor’s World War I epic The Big Parade, now available on a beautiful Blu-Ray from Warner Brothers.
The Big Parade is one of those epic films that silent Hollywood was well known for: sweeping vistas, massive casts, melodramatic tales of love, war, and redemption. Some of these epics fall flat now, with our contemporary need for sound, kinetic camerawork, rousing speeches and booming scores. While the score is still there – and it is booming, to say the least – The Big Parade is an intimate story surrounded by an epic event, making it one of the most affecting wartime dramas ever made.
The film follows the fortunes of spoiled rich guy Jim Apperson (John Gilbert) and »
- Lauren Humphries-Brooks
Ramon Novarro in one of the best silent movies: ‘The Student Prince in Old Heidelberg’ (photo: Ramon Novarro leapfrog) (See previous post: "Ramon Novarro Ben-Hur: First Big-Budget Hollywood Movie Saved by the International Market.") Ben-Hur also solidified Ramon Novarro’s international superstardom. In fact, moviegoers outside North America helped to keep Novarro working steadily at MGM up to the mid-’30s, several years after his domestic popularity had markedly diminished — and several years after fellow male silent era stars John Gilbert and William Haines had been gone from the studio. With the passing of the decades, especially since the release of William Wyler’s multiple Oscar-winning 1959 version of Ben-Hur, starring Charlton Heston, Ramon Novarro’s 1925 movie fell into oblivion. The following is from Beyond Paradise: The Life of Ramon Novarro: As the years passed, Ben-Hur, the motion picture that would “remain, as the Bible remains” became but »
- Andre Soares
Ramon Novarro is Ben-Hur: The Naked and Famous in first big-budget Hollywood movie saved by the international market (See previous post: "Ramon Novarro: Silent Movie Star.") Turner Classic Movies’ Ramon Novarro Day continues with The Son-Daughter (1933), on TCM right now. Both Novarro and Helen Hayes play Chinese characters in San Francisco’s Chinatown — in the sort of story that had worked back in 1919, when D.W. Griffith made Broken Blossoms with Lillian Gish and Richard Barthelmess. By 1933, however, the drab-looking, slow-moving The Son-Daughter felt all wrong. (Photo: Naked Ramon Novarro in Ben-Hur.) Directed by the renowned Clarence Brown (who guided Greta Garbo in some of her biggest hits), The Son-Daughter turned out to be a well-intentioned mess, eventually bombing at the box office. And that goes to show that Louis B. Mayer and/or Irving G. Thalberg didn’t always know what the hell they were doing with their stars and properties. »
- Andre Soares
The 2013 TCM Classic Film Festival continues to expand, with newly added appearances by legendary stars at screenings of some of their most memorable films, including Mel Brooks, Carl Reiner, Mickey Rooney, Jonathan Winters, Marvin Kaplan, Barrie Chase, Polly Bergen,Coleen Gray, Theodore Bikel and Norman Lloyd, as well as producer Stanley Rubin, Clara Bow biographer David Stenn, Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) film collections manager Katie Trainor and director Nicholas Ray’s widow, Susan Ray. In addition, TCM’s Essentials Jr. host and Saturday Night Live star Bill Hader will present screenings of Shane (1953) and The Ladykillers(1955).
And The Film Forum’s Bruce Goldstein will present a special screening of Frank Capra’s The Donovan Affair (1929), complete with live voice actors and sound effects to replace the film’s long-lost soundtrack.Mel Brooks is slated to talk about his comedy The Twelve Chairs (1970). Carl Reiner, Mickey Rooney, Jonathan Winters, Marvin Kaplan »
- Melissa Thompson
The 2013 TCM Classic Film Festival is just over two months away, and is slowly unveiling its usual packed slate of classic stars set to make appearances. Included in this year's in-person lineup are Max von Sydow, Ann Blyth and Eva Marie Saint. These three will each appear with landmark films in their careers; Von Sydow will be on hand for Ingmar Bergman's "The Seventh Seal" and William Friedkin's "The Exorcist"; Blyth for Michael Curtiz' "Mildred Pierce" (pictured above with Joan Crawford) and Vincente Minelli's "Kismet"; and Saint for Elia Kazan's Best-Picture-winner "On the Waterfront." Actors Mitzi Gaynor and France Nuyen ("South Pacific") and Jacqueline White ("The Narrow Margin"), along with filmmakers Kevin Brownlow (introducing newly restored silent classic "The Big Parade"), and Jerry Zucker, David Zucker and Jim Abrahams ("Airplane!") are also scheduled »
- Beth Hanna
6 items from 2013
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