Bioscope Newsreel no. 17


How can it be Friday again? Where are the days going to? Has there been any news? – I mean silent news of course, news of the inconsequential, non-life-threatening kind. Well, here’s some.

Sound of Silent Film Festival
Chicago’s Sound of Silent Film Festival describes itself “the only film festival that features modern silent films screened to live music, composed especially for the films by Chicago composers”. The festival includes works by Martin Scorsese (his bloody 1967 short film The Big Shave), Gus Van Sant, Manoel de Oliveira (the only living director to have made a silent film the first time around), Manga creator Osama Tezuka and a horror comedy created especially for the festival, which takes place April 1-3 at the Chopin Theatre. Read more.

Dante on DVD
Early Italian filmmakers loved the classics and loved spectacle. Both come together in L’inferno (1911), one of several bold attempts to put Dante on screen, notorious for its nudity, acclaimed for its Doré-inspired visual imagination and ingenious effects. It has been released on DVD by the Cineteca Bologna’s as part of its Cento anni fa series. An earlier DVD release had a score by Tangerine Dream which dividied opinion; this release comes with ambient sounds composed by Edison Studio and a piano score by Marco Dalpane. Read more.

Festival du film muet
Switzerland’s silent film festival (every country should have one) takes place in Servion, 24-27 March. Foolish Wives, Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde, Swiss title Der Bergführer, and Seven Chances are the films on show. Read more.

Toronto goes to hell
And there’s another silent film festival, this time in Toronto, taking place 30 March-7 April. Now in its second year, festival highlights include another Italian vision of hell, Maciste all’Inferno (1926), King Vidor’s The Jack Knife Man (1920), Clara Bow in It (1927), and – from the infernal regions once more – F.W. Murnau’s Faust (1927). Read more.

‘Til next time!

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