Kermode on silents

Mark Kermode, the BBC’s amusingly opiniated film critic, has a second life as bassist with retro band the Dodge Brothers (another member is film professor Mike Hammond). At the recent British Silent Film Festival the Dodge Brothers accompanied the William S. Hart western White Oak (1921) and here Kermode talks about the experience. Once we have got past the unfunny silent pastiche at the start, Kermode typically enough has some sharp points to make, comparing the CGI-dominated summer blockbusters to the artistry of the silent film, and arguing that “we have lost the ability to tell stories through facial gestures… we have lost the melody of melodrama, we have lost the tunes that used to make cinema work”. Discuss.

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