A while back, I announced that November 16, 2016 would be #NationalFlapperDay. It will be a day for watching flapper movies, sharing flapper GIFs and generally having fun in a ‘teens and Roaring Twenties manner. I thought it would be fun to share some ideas for the celebration that will work in the real world.
I’m not a real sports watcher but, like much of the world, I was charmed by the idea of the Chicago Cubs finally winning the World Series. Last night, the Cubs declared victory after a nail-biter game 7 and walked away as champions. The last time they accomplished this? 1908.
The good people at the Library of Congress have more mystery stills to identify and they are hoping that you, dear readers, will be able to assist. I think you’re the best in the west at this sort of thing, so let’s give this a try!
The Library of Congress needs our help and since they do so much for film preservation, it’s only fair that fans of classic cinema would pitch in. What do they need? Our braaaaaaaains!
I like to read reviews of silent films that were written by people who are unfamiliar with the art. It helps me remember what it was like to be a newcomer, which things seemed confusing or odd to me. On that note, I have decided to post a quick and handy answer to some common questions.
While some silent movie costumes are imaginative and undeniably awesome, a good number are chintzy, cliched and reveal the fact that the designers and wearers have never, ever seen a silent movie. (Don’t believe me? Google “flapper costume” and see what sequined, beplumed nonsense comes up.)
Welcome back to the test kitchen! I am cooking my way through Photoplay’s 1929 cookbook but today, we’re taking a little detour. I’m going to be preparing a 1916 recipe inspired by one of the most popular leading men of the 1910s.
Welcome back! I’m cooking my way through Photoplay’s 1929 star recipe cookbook and you’re invited to join me. This week, an appetizer from an elegant leading lady.
Okay, so readers of this site know that the fastest way to get me annoyed is to claim that silent films were filled with women tied to tracks. I have debunked this myth again and again and again but then an offhand remark in the New York Times sends silent movie fans back to mythbusting square one. Sigh.
The news that Fritz Lang’s Destiny (Der müde Tod) was being restored has been met with great excitement in silent film circles. A highly elaborate and influential production, Alfred Hitchcock was among its fans.
Have you ever met one of THOSE fans? You know the kind I mean, the people who are so obsessed with a particular star that they consider attention for anyone else to be an insult. They’re the fans who hate a star’s girlfriend for dating their favorite. Alas, Rudolph Valentino has them in spades.
We’re back to cooking! It’s been a while so here is a refresher on the project: I am attempting to cook my way through the 1929 Photoplay Cookbook (recipes of the stars!) and I am sharing the results. You can catch up on all my previous attempts here.
With a new version of Ben-Hur set to open in the United States in just a few days, I thought I would take this opportunity to answer a few questions that seem to come up a lot regarding the 1925 silent original.
Regular readers have probably guessed already that I am obsessed with color in early film. While Technicolor and hand-color get a lot of attention, I wanted to take time to celebrate the workhorses of silent movie color: tinting and toning. Continue reading “Tinted and Toned Nitrate: Taste the Rainbow (Actually, don’t. I’m pretty sure it’s toxic.)”
The time has come, the walrus said, to talk about opening scenes, those iconic moments that kicked off great films. Star Wars (1977) started things off with a literal bang, its heroes on the run from a gargantuan, relentless enemy. Once Upon a Time in the West (1968) kept its bangs in check until the end of the scene and contented itself with a rusty windmill and three bored killers. Yojimbo (1961) set the stage with Masaru Sato’s cocky score and a shot of Toshiro Mifune’s shoulders swinging as he walked down a dusty road.
I have to admit it, I have an addiction. I love, love, love celebrity cookbooks from the good old days. Quirky, zany and often inedible, the recipes of the stars are an intriguing window into the early days of celebrity culture.
Welcome back! I am cooking celebrity recipes from the silent era and you’re invited to tag along. You can catch up on all my previous efforts here. Today, we’re trying out a dessert from one of the biggest stars of the silent era.
Today, we’re going to be a little silly. It’s never a bad thing to let our hair down and embrace the wackiness of silent movie fandom. The topic at hand: crushes.
Welcome back! I am cooking assorted recipes from notable silent film personalities and you are invited to tag along. (I have listed all the recipes I have tested on this dedicated page. Check back often.) Today, we will be testing a recipe from one of the greatest costume designers of all time.
Here’s a query that has shown up a lot lately:
“How do I make my own silent movie?”
Well, kids, there are hundreds of ways this could go wrong but here goes.
Here’s a real treat: ice cream that doesn’t need an ice cream maker! Even better, you only need a few basic ingredients and a mixer to make it. Here’s my silent movie twist on a fabulous recipe.
If you were stuck on a desert island, which classic movies would you want to take with you? That is the question Rick of Classic Film and TV Cafe has asked as part of his celebration of Classic Movie Day.
Ask the average person to describe a silent movie villain and you’ll probably hear something like this:
“Big, curly mustache, black top hat, black cape. Always terrorizing damsels.”
The thing is, they’re describing Snidely Whiplash and Professor Fate, both of whom were created decades after the silent era. Time to smash some myths!
Welcome back! I am cooking up recipes of the silent stars and tasting them from a modern point of view. (I have listed all the recipes I have tested on this dedicated page. Check back often.) Today, we will be testing a recipe from a superstar of the talkies who made a few silents in her youth.
Welcome back! I am cooking my way through the 1929 Photoplay cookbook (recipes of the stars!) and you are invited to tag along. (I have listed all the recipes I have tested on this dedicated page. Check back often.) Today, we will be testing a recipe from one of the more controversial comedians of the silent era.
When the trailer for the new Ben-Hur was released, the internet went a little silly. There were people complaining that the classic 1959 version was being remade (scandal!) and then there were people who pointed out that the beloved Charlton Heston flick was itself a remake. (Guess which club I belonged to.)
Welcome back! I am cooking my way through the 1929 Photoplay cookbook (recipes of the stars!) and you are invited to tag along. (I have listed all the recipes I have tested on this dedicated page. Check back often.) Today, we will be testing a recipe from one of the most iconic performers of the silent era.
Are you annoyed? Good! Then you know how I feel. I’ve had quite a week of petty annoyance and the cause, I am sorry to say, is Buster Keaton.
The Academy Awards will kick off tomorrow night and so this seemed like a perfect opportunity to remind everyone that the organization was founded almost a year before Al Jolson declared: “You ain’t heard nothing yet!”
Most newcomers to silent film start out with comedies and there are four comedians who are usually trotted out as the best of the best. The so-called Big Four are indeed wonderful but there are risks.