Mr. Wu (1927) - News Poster

(1927)

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Desert-Set Adventure Movie Filled with Unsavory Characters Dares to Posit Ancient Philosophical Question

Desert-Set Adventure Movie Filled with Unsavory Characters Dares to Posit Ancient Philosophical Question
Desert Nights with John Gilbert and Mary Nolan: Enjoyable Sahara-set adventure – which happened to be Gilbert's last silent film – dares to ask the age-old philosophical question, “Is there honor among thieves?” John Gilbert late silent adventure 'Desert Nights' asks a question for the ages: Is there honor among thieves? The Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer release Desert Nights arrived in theaters at the tail end of the silent era. By 1929, audiences wanted lots of singing and dancing – talkies! And they might have been impatient to hear John Gilbert's speaking voice. I can't tell whether sound would have improved it or not, but Desert Nights has a lot of title cards filled with dialogue. Directed by the prolific William Nigh,[1] the film tells the story of diamond thieves who get stranded in the Sahara and almost die of thirst. (At first, Desert Nights' was appropriately titled Thirst.) Cinematographer James Wong Howe perfectly captures the hot, dry
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Don't Let the U.S. Government Shut Down! Quality Halloween Movies in October, Courtesy of the Library of Congress

The Cat and the Canary’ 1939: Paulette Goddard / Bob Hope haunted house comedy among Halloween 2013 movies at Packard Theater There’s much to recommend among the Library of Congress’ Packard Campus and State Theater screenings in Culpeper, Virginia, in October 2013, including the until recently super-rare Bob Hope / Paulette Goddard haunted house comedy The Cat and the Canary (1939). And that’s one more reason to hope that the Republican Party’s foaming-at-the-mouth extremists (and their voters and supporters), ever bent on destroying the economic and sociopolitical fabric of the United States (and of the rest of the world), will not succeed in shutting down the federal government and thus potentially wreak havoc throughout the U.S. and beyond. (Photo: Bob Hope and Paulette Goddard in The Cat and the Canary.) Screening on Thursday, October 31, at the Packard Theater, Elliott Nugent’s The Cat and the Canary is a remake of Paul Leni
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Frederica Sagor Pt.2: Women Screenwriters in 1920s Hollywood

Screenwriter Frederica Sagor Dead at 111: Wrote Movies for Norma Shearer (photo), Clara Bow, Louise Brooks Now, whether Frederica Sagor's Hollywood Babylon-like tales bear any resemblance to what actually happened at studio parties and private soirees, I can't tell. But on the professional side, one problem with the information found in The Shocking Miss Pilgrim is that studios invariably used numerous writers, whether male or female, in their projects. Usually, in those pre-Writers Guild days, only two or three contributors received final credit, not because of the uncredited writer's gender but in large part because the final product oftentimes had little — if anything — in common with the original source. While doing research for my Ramon Novarro biography, I went through various drafts, written by various hands, of his movies. A Certain Young Man, for instance, went through so many changes (including director, cast, and title), that the final film
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Silent All Quiet On The Western Front: TCM Library of Congress Tribute

Joan Fontaine-Charles Boyer in Rare The Constant Nymph on TCM. [Photo: Miriam Jordan, Neil Hamilton in Two Heads on a Pillow.] Besides the Edmund Goulding-directed Joan Fontaine-Charles Boyer-Alexis Smith movie The Constant Nymph, other Library of Congress Film Archive entries on Turner Classic Movies tonight include Two Heads on a Pillow (1934), a B comedy directed by William Nigh, an important late silent-era director (Lon Chaney's Mr. Wu, Ramon Novarro's Across to Singapore) later stuck with second-rate fare. Apparently a sort of Adam's Rib predecessor, Two Heads on a Pillow features former silent-era leading man Neil Hamilton (Batman's Commissioner Gordon) and minor leading lady Miriam Jordan as once-married attorneys involved in a divorce case. It's probably worth watching even if only because of its cast, which also includes silent-era veterans Betty Blythe (the title role in the now-lost The Queen of Sheba) and Claire McDowell (Ramon Novarro's leprosy-stricken mom in Ben-Hur,
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Lon Chaney Movie Schedule: The Phantom Of The Opera, Tell It To The Marines, Mr. Wu

Lon Chaney on TCM: He Who Gets Slapped, The Unknown, Mr. Wu Get ready for more extreme perversity in West of Zanzibar (1928), as Chaney abuses both Warner Baxter and Mary Nolan, while the great-looking Mr. Wu (1927) offers Chaney as a Chinese creep about to destroy the life of lovely Renée Adorée — one of the best and prettiest actresses of the 1920s. Adorée — who was just as effective in her few early talkies — died of tuberculosis in 1933. Also worth mentioning, the great John Arnold was Mr. Wu's cinematographer. I'm no fan of Laugh, Clown, Laugh (1928), The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1923), or The Phantom of the Opera (1925), but Chaney's work in them — especially in Hunchback — is quite remarkable. I mean, his performances aren't necessarily great, but they're certainly unforgettable. Chaney's leading ladies — all of whom are in love with younger, better-looking men — are Loretta Young (Laugh, Clown, Laugh), Patsy Ruth Miller
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Warner Archive Releases Lon Chaney Rarities

  • CinemaRetro
By Doug Gerbino

The Warner Archive Collection released six rare Lon Chaney, Sr. films on October 26 -- five silents and one talkie (his one and only talkie). The films are He Who Gets Slapped (1924); The Monster and The Unholy Three (both 1925); Mr. Wu and Mockery (both 1927); and The Unholy 3 (1930), the sound remake of the 1925 film with a numerical title and a different ending. Lon Chaney, Sr. was a fascinating actor. It's a shame that he is pigeon-holed as a horror star. This is due to the over-availability of two of his most famous films: Hunchback of Notre Dame (1923) and Phantom of the Opera (1925/29). The fact that these two films are public domain has made them the most widely available of his movies. Within recent years, Warner Home Video has been releasing some of Chaney's MGM films. In 2003, Warner Home Video and TCM released The Lon Chaney Collection, which contained three films: The Aces of Hearts,
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