Tillie's Punctured Romance (1914) - News Poster

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Rediscovering Long-Forgotten Pioneering Comedy Performer: She Could Have Been Chaplin!

Comedy actress Alice Howell on the cover of film historian Anthony Slide's latest book: Pioneering funky-haired performer 'could have been Chaplin' – or at the very least another Louise Fazenda. Rediscovering comedy actress Alice Howell: Female performer in movie field dominated by men Early comedy actress Alice Howell is an obscure entity even for silent film aficionados. With luck, only a handful of them will be able to name one of her more than 100 movies, mostly shorts – among them Sin on the Sabbath, A Busted Honeymoon, How Stars Are Made – released between 1914 and 1920. Yet Alice Howell holds (what should be) an important – or at the very least an interesting – place in film history. After all, she was one of the American cinema's relatively few pioneering “funny actresses,” along with the likes of the better-known Flora Finch, Louise Fazenda, and, a top star in her day, Mabel Normand.[1] Also of note,
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

Charlie Chaplin's Los Angeles: a black and white odyssey

In search of flickering reminders of Chaplin's La, Kira Cochrane follows in the footsteps of The Little Tramp, on the centenary of his arrival in Hollywood

Charlie Chaplin slept here: La hotels

The footprints and signature on the doorstep have faded, but there's no confusion about who built these studios: Charlie Chaplin, dressed as the Little Tramp, is painted on the door. Time-lapse footage of the construction of this mock Tudor village – now owned by the Jim Henson Company and identified by a 12ft statue of Kermit above the entrance – appears in How To Make Movies, a film directed by Chaplin in 1918. It shows the small hamlet emerging among the lemon groves that once undulated here, a city rising from the dust.

I wonder how much of Hollywood would exist if Chaplin had never arrived. If the manager of his touring vaudeville troupe had never received that abrupt, misspelled
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Chaplin at Keystone - Philip French's classic DVD

1914, U, BFI

This important, instructive, hugely enjoyable four-disc set contains painstakingly restored and attractively scored prints of 34 of the 35 films Charlie Chaplin made at Mack Sennett's Keystone studio between January and December 1914. They introduced Chaplin to the cinema, turning him in the process from an admired music hall artist into an accomplished film-maker, who ended the year on the threshold of becoming the most famous man in the world and its highest-paid entertainer. In the course of this astonishing 12 months, he worked with silent stars Mabel Normand, Fatty Arbuckle and Chester Conklin, and we see a great artist evolve, appearing first as a silk-hatted pseudo-toff in his debut film, Making a Living, competing for work at a Los Angeles newspaper. In his second film, the seven-minute Kid Auto Races at Venice, he discovered his tramp persona complete with bowler and cane, delighting and puzzling the crowds at a children's
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

"Back to the Future" in Blu, Uwe Boll's in "Darfur" and More New DVDs

  • IFC
A look at what's new on DVD today:

"Back to the Future: 25th Anniversary Trilogy"

Directed by Robert Zemeckis

Released by Universal Home Entertainment

Yes, we're finally getting the footage of the original Marty McFly, Eric Stoltz, for the first time, but for many simply having the hi-def version of Robert Zemeckis' time-travel franchise will be good enough. Commentaries, deleted scenes, a full-length documentary and much, much more come on this new set of the trilogy.

"Alien Anthology"

Directed by Ridley Scott, James Cameron, David Fincher, Jean-Pierre Jeunet

Released by Fox Home Entertainment

While not as much of an upgrade over its previous DVD release as "Back to the Future," the Blu-ray update of the four "Alien" films worth owning now boasts isolated scores for each film, all of Ridley Scott's sketches for the first "Alien," the uncut documentary of David Fincher's ill-fated "Alien 3" as
See full article at IFC »

I'm Not a Huge Charles Chaplin Fan but...

...this moment in Modern Times is near perfection. For those that don't know what's going on in the scene, he had the lyrics to the song he was supposed to sing on his cuffs, which you will notice fly off almost immediately. One thing interesting about the song Chaplin sings is that it is the first time you hear the Tramp's voice as he sings "Je cherche apres Titine" in French/Italian gibberish but his actions lead the audience to understand what he is supposed to be singing about entirely. If you are yet to familiarize yourself with Chaplin or are looking for a refresher course on April 16 TCM is set to run 10 Chaplin films in a row including Tillie's Punctured Romance (1914), A Dog's Life (1918), A Day's Pleasure (1919), The Kid (1921), Pay Day (1922), A Woman of Paris (1923), The Gold Rush (1925), Modern Times (1936), The Great Dictator (1940), A King in New York (1957) and
See full article at Rope Of Silicon »

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