The Story of Film: An Odyssey: Season 1, Episode 2

Episode #1.2 (10 Sep. 2011)

TV Episode  |   |  Documentary, History
7.8
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Title: Episode #1.2 (10 Sep 2011)

Episode #1.2 (10 Sep 2011) on IMDb 7.8/10

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Cast

Episode credited cast:
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Himself - Presenter
Stanley Donen ...
Himself - Interviewee
...
Himself - Interviewee
Anita Loos ...
Herself (archive footage)
King Vidor ...
Himself (archive footage)
...
Himself - Interviewee
...
Himself (archive footage)
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Narrator (spanish version) (voice)
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10 September 2011 (UK)  »

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Himself - Presenter: Hollywood's cinema, the bauble, is brilliant at the anticipation of seeing. The desire to see. The pleasure of seeing. The thief falls in love, of course. And his love sets in motion the rest of the film. This sort of movie is usually called classical. But really, it's romantic. It became Hollywood's claim to fame in the 20's. It's what most people mean when they even say the word "movie". It's the mainstream, the bauble.
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The Hollywood Dream
31 May 2013 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Episode two features the 1920s, what the narrator calls "the greatest decade in the story of film". Here we have the rise of Paramount, Warner Brothers and MGM. We have sound stages for better control of light. And we have each studio with its own feel and style -- Warner Brothers, for example, stood out as more "streetwise", with stars that were "angels with dirty faces".

Most notably, the 1920s brought the best innovation in comedy -- the trio of silent comedy legends: Buster Keaton, Charles Chaplin and (the often neglected) Harold Lloyd. Keaton "defined silent cinema" and "thought like an architect". He was probably the best director working in comedy at the time -- maybe ever.

Chaplin was less into the camera, but more into body movement. He "though like a dancer". I did not realize the connection between Chaplin and Billy Wilder, who had homages in both "Sunset Boulevard" and "Some Like It Hot". While the "Sunset" homage is obvious, the other is not.

Most interesting in this episode, though, is the focus on Carl Dreyer, who experimented with simplicity, whiteness... and was later influential on Lars von Trier's "Dogville". He may not be as famous as the comedy giants, but that makes him no less important to the history of film. I am now inspired to watch the Dreyer films I have not yet seen...


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