Saturday, November 30, 2013

A Girl in Every Port in Madison, Wisconsin on December 7th

On December 7th, A Girl in Every Port (1928), starring Louise Brooks, will also be shown in Madison, Wisconsin. This Howard Hawks-directed buddy film, in which Brooks plays a gold digger who comes between two friends, is considered one of the legendary director's best silent efforts. It screens at the Cinematheque at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, with live musical accompaniment provided by David Drazin. More information at http://cinema.wisc.edu/series/2013/fall/howard-hawks


Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving, from the Louise Brooks Society

Happy Thanksgiving, from the Louise Brooks Society.


Friday, November 22, 2013

Doctor Who and Louise Brooks

2009 Doctor Who comic book
The connections between the silent film star Louise Brooks and the contemporary science fiction TV series Doctor Who are unexpected. Nevertheless, the actress has appeared as a character in a Doctor Who comics, and one of her biggest fans is an actor who once the played the Doctor himself!

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who, the Louise Brooks Society looks back to this 2012 interview with actor Paul McGann, who played the eighth Doctor. McGann is as well a BIG fan of Louise Brooks. In 2007, the celebrated actor wrote an article for the Guardian (UK) about silent film star.

Who is Paul McGann? As an actor, he first made a name for himself in 1986 as the lead in a historical BBC drama set during WWI, The Monocled Mutineer (this once-controversial series is out on DVD in the UK). McGann is also known for his role in one of Britain's biggest cult films, the 1987 black comedy, Withnail and I. Other credits include parts in Empire of the Sun, Alien 3, Queen of the Damned, and the BBC's Our Mutual Friend and Hornblower series.

McGann may be best known, at least to science-fiction fans, as the Eighth Doctor, a role he played in the 1996 Doctor Who made-for-television movie. Its story, of the Doctor's regeneration and attempt to save the earth, is set in San Francisco in 1999, on the eve of the millennium.

McGann is, as well, a patron of Bristol Silents, a group formed to raise awareness and knowledge of silent film among the English film going public. He has introduced screenings of films from the silent era and written about them for newspapers including the Guardian in England; his piece on Louise Brooks, with whom he shares a birthday, is well worth checking out.

Recently, McGann answered a few questions about his interest in the silent era and what he is looking forward to seeing at this year’s San Francisco Silent Film Festival.

Actor Paul McGann and LBS Director Thomas Gladysz
Thomas Gladysz: When did you first get interested in silent film?  

Paul McGann: About ten years ago after becoming a patron of Bristol Silents. I'd had a general interest since my student days in London, during which the restored Napoleon was premiered, Kevin Brownlow's Abel Gance and David Robinson's Chaplin were published, and Louise Brooks was being 're-discovered.'  

Thomas Gladysz: Tell me more about your involvement with Bristol Silents. How did that relationship come about?  

Paul McGann: I supported one of their early events, I think it was a screening of The Big Parade, and met Chris Daniels [a founder of the group]. He's kindly involved me in quite a few of their projects since, each bigger and better by the year.  

Thomas Gladysz: Any favorite films? How about favorite directors or stars?  

Paul McGann: The first director I worked with, Bruce Robinson, told me when we met that if I thought Jaws was the perfect movie I plainly hadn't seen The Gold Rush. So I did. He was right. I've been a fan of Louise Brooks since first seeing Pandora's Box on television. I remember thinking they must've had that girl playing Lulu parachuted in from the present.  

Thomas Gladysz: You've written and spoken about Louise Brooks, and introduced her films. What is it about the actress that attracts you?  

Paul McGann: She appeared to find, if only briefly, the perfect working spirit. Matchlessly beautiful, fully intelligent and a total natural; most screen actors would kill to be so blessed.  

Thomas Gladysz: At this year's San Francisco Silent Film festival, you're narrating South, Frank Hurley's documentary of Ernest Shackleton's expedition to Antarctica. What can we expect?  

Paul McGann as Doctor Who

Paul McGann: Musician Stephen Horne and myself will try to recreate at least a flavour of the public screenings Shackelton hosted at London's Philharmonic Hall in 1919 when he read from his memoir while Hurley's film played.  

Thomas Gladysz: Have you narrated the film before?  

Paul McGann: Twice, in Bristol and Pordenone, Italy.  

Thomas Gladysz: Are there any films you're especially excited about at this year's Festival.

Paul McGann: Aside from the thrill of seeing a beautifully restored Pandora's Box, I'm really intrigued about Little Toys from China and Erotikon from Sweden.  

Thomas Gladysz: You played a Time Lord in Doctor Who. Were you to travel back in time and return to the silent era and be cast in a film, which film would that be?  

Paul McGann: That's easy, Murnau's Sunrise. I'd gladly (my wife might say naturally) take over George O'Brien's duties as the man caught between Janet Gaynor and Margaret Livingston.


*****

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Get social :: Louise Brooks Society on Twitter

The Louise Brooks Society is on Twitter @LB_Society. As of now, the LBS is followed by more than 2,080 fans. Are you one of them? Why not join the conversation? Be sure and visit the LBS
Twitter profile, and check out the more than 2,643 LBS tweets so far!
You should have seen the large number of fans tweeting birthday wishes to the actress
last week. Louise Brooks was trending in 2013! The LBS
twitter stream can also be found
in the right hand column.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

RadioLulu Reminder :: Louise Brooks Radio

A reminder to be sure and check out RadioLulu - Louise Brooks inspired, silent film themed radio featuring music of the Twenties, Thirties and today - includes Brooks' related film music, early jazz, dance bands, songs sung by silent film stars, and contemporary pop music about the silent film star.


This unique station features music from six of the Brooks' films - including the haunting themes from Beggars of Life (1928) and Prix de Beaute (1930), as well as musical snippets from The Canary Murder Case (1929) and Empty Saddles (1936). Other vintage tracks associated with the actress on RadioLulu include Maurice Chevalier's much-loved 1929 recording of "Louise," and rare recordings by co-stars Adolphe Menjou, Noah Beery, Blanche Ring, Grace Moore, and Cary Grant. RadioLulu also plays contemporary musical tributes to the actress by the likes of Twiggy, Rufus Wainwright, Soul Coughing, OMD (Orchestral Manoeuvers in the Dark), Marillion, The Green Pajamas, Ron Hawkins, Sarah Azzara, Paul Hayes, and Clan of Xymox, among others.

Rare recording by Brooks' Hollywood contemporaries are also featured. Among the film world personalities heard on the station are Rudolph Valentino, Gloria Swanson, Charlie Chaplin, Joan Crawford, Pola Negri, Ramon Novarro, Dolores Del Rio, Lupe Velez, Bebe Daniels, Marlene Dietrich, Buddy Rogers, Jean Harlow, and Tallulah Bankhead. Janet Gaynor and Charles Farrell can also be heard singing the charming "If I Had A Talking Picture Of You."

On RadioLulu, you'll also hear Jazz Age crooners, torch singers, dance bands, hotel orchestras, show tunes, standards, and some real sweet jazz! There are vintage recordings from England, France, Germany, and even Czechoslovakia. There are also tracks featuring the celebrated 1930's Polish chanteuse Hanka Ordonówna, the German dramatist Bertolt Brecht (singing "Mack the Knife" in 1929!), and the contemporary cartoonist Robert Crumb (playing on "Chanson por Louise Brooks"). And what's more, you'd be hard-pressed to find a station that plays more tracks with "Lulu" in the title than the always eclectic and always entertaining RadioLulu!

Who else can be heard on RadioLulu? How about the Coon-Sanders Nighthawks, Duke Ellington, Fats Waller, Abe Lyman, Fred Waring's Pennsylvanians, Gertrude Lawrence, Annette Hanshaw, Rudy Vallee, Helen Kane, Paul Whiteman, Ted Weems, George Gershwin, Russ Colombo, Harry Richman, Libby Holman and Xavier Cugart - as well as Camilla Horn, Lillian Harvey, Anny Ondra, Josephine Baker, Lucienne Boyer, Mistinguett, and even Kiki of Montparnase.

RadioLulu plays great music, including numerous rare recordings of movie stars from the silent film and early sound era. Check it out !

Monday, November 18, 2013

Louise Brooks :: Cool pic of the day

Louise Brooks :: Cool pic of the day. Smiling, at last....

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Homage to Valentina, Homage to Lulu

Omaggio alla Valentina di Guido Crepax, a Louise Brooks e a Rina Ketty.


And


From YouTube: Valentina nasce nel 1965 da uno dei disegnatori più innovativi della storia del fumetto: Guido Crepax, un grafico pubblicitario e illustratore di successo, scomparso il 31 luglio 2003 a Milano all'età di 70 anni.

La prima pubblicazione di Valentina comparve all'interno della rivista mensile "Linus" e si intitolava "La curva di Lesmo". Protagonista era appunto Philip, alias Neutron, critico d'arte e investigatore dilettante, dotato di particolari poteri psichici, che gli consentivano di paralizzare con lo sguardo, qualsiasi individuo o qualsiasi macchina. Tale capacità gli derivava dal suo legame di parentela con i Sotterranei, una popolazione cieca che viveva nel sottosuolo a 20.000 mt di profondità.

Ben presto Valentina grazie al suo carisma e al successo di pubblico, scalza il protagonista Philip Rembrandt, conquistandosi il ruolo di protagonista in tutte le storie seguenti. Ciò che colpisce maggiormente di questo personaggio sono i suoi viaggi onirici, ricchi di simbologia surrealista e di introspezione psicologica, che la vedono spesso e volentieri sconfinare nel mondo dell'eros. I fumetti che narrano le sue vicende sono di fatto destinati a un pubblico adulto.

Se le vicende di Neutron era nate mescolando hard-boiled e fumetto supereroico, con Valentina Crepax trova il personaggio adatto per scavare in profondità nella società del suo tempo, e soprattutto nelle pieghe più remote dell'inconscio.

Ciò che contraddistingue l'originalità grafica del fumetto di Guido Crepax è lo stile delle inquadrature e la disposizione delle vignette all'interno della tavola, che ne mettono in risalto il potere espressivo. Queste scelte stilistiche sono sempre funzionali alla storia e contribuiscono ad amplificare la dinamicità di un movimento oppure a mettere in evidenza un dettaglio, o a comunicare un sentimento.

Valentina Guido Crepax Tribute
Music by Fio Zanetti
Editing KodyPoldino
Thx to LaBellaAddormentataNelFosso for supervision and support!
Thx To All friends, All Pets, All stars!

Friday, November 15, 2013

Homage to J'attendrai

Rina Ketty - J'attendrai (Dino Olivieri), Pathé 1938 & Louise Brooks' photographs from 1920s


This is a rather charming song.... Michael Jary m.s. Tanz-Orchester, refraingesang Rudi Schuricke - Komm zurück (J'attendrai) (Dino Olivieri), Odeon 1939.


No matter who sings it or how it is arranged. Here is Max Raabe.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Happy birthday Louise Brooks

Louise Brooks was born on this day in 1906 in Cherryvale, Kansas. She never felt loved by many, though she was. In fact, she kept those who did or would love her at a distance. Perhaps that was because she never thought much of herself. In later years she wrote in a letter to her brother,
I have been taking stock of my 50 years since I left Wichita in 1922 at the age of 15 to become a dancer with Ruth St. Denis and Ted Shawn. How I have existed fills me with horror. For I have failed in everything — spelling, arithmetic, riding, tennis, golf; dancing, singing, acting; wife, mistress, whore, friend. Even cooking. And I do not excuse myself with the usual escape of ‘not trying.’ I tried with all my heart.
Louise Brooks, where ever you are, know that you are loved and admired by many.


And don't forget, starting today the Kino Ponrepo in Prague launches a month-long series highlighting the actress' best films. The Ponrepo is the National Film Archive of the Czech Republic, and they're set to show Pandora's Box / Pandořina skříňka (November 14th), Diary of a Lost Girl / Deník ztracené (November 21st), A Girl in Every Port / Všude jiné děvče (November 26th), Beggars of Life / Žebráci života (December 3rd), and The Canary Murder Case / Případ zavražděného kanárka (December 10th).

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Louise Brooks, magnet of meaning

Louise Brooks was born on November 14, 1906. Now, more than 25 years after her death, the silent film star is more popular than ever.

Brooks, famous for both her sleek dark bob and role as Lulu in Pandora's Box, is undergoing something of a revival. The actress -- her image and legend, are seemingly everywhere.

On October 17th, bestselling author Donna Tartt (who also sports a stylish bob) told the New York Times that one of the books she's currently reading is Barry Paris' acclaimed biography of the actress. That book, first published in 1989, is considered one of the finest film biographies ever written.

The day before, the same newspaper suggested that South African artist William Kentridge had also been drawn to Brooks. Kentridge is staging Alban Berg's opera Lulu at the Met in 2015; he explained to the New York Times that "his Lulu was being inspired by German Expressionism, Weimar cinema (including, of course, Pandora's Box, the G. W. Pabst version of the Lulu story starring Louise Brooks), Max Beckmann drypoints depicting brothels and the like."

While the New York Times was giving a shout-out to the actress, a stage play about Brooks was running in London. Janet Munsil's Smoking with Lulu dramatizes an encounter between the older Brooks and the younger Kenneth Tynan, the English critic who had a lifelong erotic obsession with the actress. Munsil, a Canadian playwright, wrote Smoking with Lulu in 1995. Prior to its recent revival in London, Smoking with Lulu had been staged across the British Isles, Canada, and even once in Richmond, Virginia at an event called Lulupalooza.

Brooks' film career, which began in 1925, was brief. She appeared in 14 movies in the United States before heading to Europe where she starred in the three works on which her reputation rests, Pandora's Box (1929), Diary of a Lost Girl (1929), and Prix de Beaute (1930). Upon her return the States, Brooks was reduced to small roles in largely B-films. By the mid-1930s, Brooks' film career was in shambles. Decades of obscurity would follow.

Beggars of Life (1928) is considered Brooks' best American silent. Directed by William Wellman shortly after he made Wings -- the first film to win an Academy Award, Beggars of Life tells the story of a girl who dresses as a boy and goes on the run after killing her abusive stepfather. The film was shown on November 10th in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania at the Hollywood Theater. Brooks' biographer Paris introduced, with live musical accompaniment provided by Daryl Fleming & the Public Domain.

Another Brooks' American silent, A Girl in Every Port (1928), will also be shown in the coming weeks. This Howard Hawks-directed buddy film, in which Brooks plays a gold digger, is considered one of the legendary director's best silent efforts. It screens at the Cinematheque at the University of Wisconsin in Madison on December 7th, with live musical accompaniment provided by David Drazin.

Elsewhere, in Europe on November 14, the Kino Ponrepo in Prague launches a month-long series highlighting the actress' best work. The Ponrepo is the National Film Archive of the Czech Republic, and they're set to show Pandora's Box / Pandořina skříňka (November 14th), Diary of a Lost Girl / Deník ztracené (November 21st), A Girl in Every Port / Všude jiné děvče (November 26th), Beggars of Life / Žebráci života (December 3rd), and The Canary Murder Case / Případ zavražděného kanárka (December 10th).

Brooks started as a dancer, worked as a showgirl and actress, and later while living in poverty and isolation developed her considerable talents as a writer. In 1982, she penned Lulu in Hollywood, a collection of highly praised autobiographical essays. Though primarily a performer, Brooks has over the years acted as muse to various artists, including songwriters, novelists, poets, painters and fashion designers.

Louise Brooks also figures in Hilton Als' new book, White Girls, which is out from McSweeney's. In it, Als writes in the voice of the actress; in the words of the publisher, "In pieces that hairpin between critique and meditation, fiction and nonfiction, high culture and low, the theoretical and the deeply personal, Als presents a stunning portrait of a writer by way of his subjects, and an invaluable guide to the culture of our time."

The Tiger Lillies are a British Grammy-nominated three piece band with a cult following who have toured the world with works of musical theatre including Shockheaded Peter and The Gorey End; they have also released nearly 30 CDs and been inspired by Brooks. Due out soon is Lulu, their homage to the actress and her role as Lulu in Pandora's Box.

The Tiger Lillies are currently touring the United States and Europe. Also on tour is Mike Doughty, a singer-songwriter and ex-front man for the band Soul Coughing. Doughty, who sports a Brooks' tattoo, is currently on tour playing "re-imagined" versions of songs by his former band, including the 1998 Brooks' homage "St. Louise Is Listening."

Another tribute comes from the fashion world. PerezHilton.com reported on November 1 that Rihanna is modeling a coat by designer Jean Paul Gaultier which bears a likeness of Brooks. This new design is not Gaultier's first nod to Brooks.

Some 75 years after her last films, and some 25 years after her death, Louise Brooks' star shines brighter than ever. She remains a magnet of meaning.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Denishawn article from the Ohio State University newspaper

As was mentioned in the previous post, over this past weekend I was in Columbus, Ohio and took the opportunity to visit the Ohio State University Thompson Library where I came across a few clippings in the school's student newspaper which were related to Louise Brooks.

Here is an article which appeared in The Lantern around the time of Louise Brooks first appearance in the city as a member of the Denishawn Dance Company. This piece doesn't mention Brooks specifically (other Denishawn articles from the time sometimes do). Nevertheless, it give a sense of the era and of Brooks' time in Denishawn. Brooks dances in Columbus twice, on Thursday March 8, 1923 and Saturday, November 24, 1923. Both were evening performances. Martha Graham was in the company during the first performance.

The piece is presented here for your amusement.




Monday, November 11, 2013

Some Louise Brooks finds at the Ohio State University

I was in Columbus, Ohio this past weekend for a family wedding (congrats David and Brittni), and took the opportunity to visit the Ohio State University library. I was there to look through back issues of the school's student newspaper, The Lantern.

A few years back, I had surveyed the three Columbus newspapers of the 1920's and 1930's, and had acquired a good number of clipping regarding Brooks' two 1923 Denishawn performances at the city's Memorial Hall, as well as the later screenings of her various silent and sound films at Columbus movie theater's.

The three newspapers I surveyed were the Columbus Citizen, Columbus Dispatch, and the Ohio State Journal. I was curious as to whether or not The Lantern had covered any of these events, just had other student newspapers I have examined had done so.


I can report that I found an article about Denishawn and an advertisement, as well as small write ups about a couple of Louise Brooks' films. I also found a bunch of advertisements for the actress's films at the time they played in Columbus.

A big thank you to student librarian assistant at the Thompson Library who helped me access this material.

Here is some of what I came across.

 





Sunday, November 10, 2013

Tiger Lillies to release Lulu, homage to Pandora's Box and Louise Brooks

The Tiger Lillies are a British Grammy-nominated three piece band with a cult following who have toured the world with works of musical theater including Shockheaded Peter and The Gorey End; they have also released nearly 30 CDs, and, it turns out, been inspired by Louise Brooks.

Due out soon is Lulu, their homage to the actress and her role as Lulu in Pandora's Box. Here is a video clip, shot in Russia, this past September. The Tiger Lillies are seen performing a song (or two) from their forthcoming release.

According to an article in the St Petersburg Times (a Russian newspaper)
Speaking in a backroom of Helsinkibar during the band’s September visit, Jacques said the new album and show, “Lulu – A Murder Ballad,” is based on Frank Wedekind’s plays,“Earth Spirit” (1895) and “Pandora’s Box” (1904).
The plays follow Lulu, a social climber turned prostitute in Berlin, Paris and London at the turn of the century, and inspired Georg Wilhelm Pabst’s 1929 silent film “Die Büchse der Pandora” (Pandora’s Box) starring Louise Brooks as Lulu. The plays also served as inspiration for Austrian composer Alban Berg’s 1935 opera “Lulu,” which was left uncompleted at the time of the composer’s death and premiered as a complete opera nearly forty-four years after Berg’s death. A collaborative album by Lou Reed and Metallica, “Lulu,” was also inspired by the plays and was released to mixed reviews in 2011. “We’ll do quite a lot of ‘Lulu’ songs,” Jacques told The St. Petersburg Times.
Commissioned by Opera North, the national opera company for the north of England and written by Jacques, the 20-song show “Lulu – A Murder Ballad” will premiere in London in January.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Louise Brooks as a Sim

Here are a couple of images I recently came across of Louise Brooks as Sim. Whatcha think?






Friday, November 8, 2013

Louise Brooks, The American Venus, on exhibit in Astoria exhibit

Portrait of Louise Brooks, American Venus (1926).
Collection of Museum of the Moving Image. Gift of Frederika Tuttle Hastings
and Helen Tuttle Votichenko.
Credit: Museum of the Moving Image
This portrait of Louise Brooks, taken while she was making The American Venus (1926), is currently on display at the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria, New York. The portrait is part of "Lights, Camera, Astoria!," an exhibit which traces the history of the Astoria Studios, where Brooks made a numbe rof her early Paramount films.

Studio site photograph, Astoria Studio, c. 1930 (Collection of Museum of the Moving Image. Gift of Dorothy Kandel)

EXHIBITION
Lights, Camera, Astoria!

October 26, 2013–February 9, 2014
In the Amphitheater Gallery


Organized by Barbara Miller, Curator of the Collection and Exhibitions, and Richard Koszarski, author of Hollywood on the Hudson

This exhibition traces the fascinating history of the Astoria Studio complex, which has been at the heart of filmmaking in New York City since 1920. The studio site was the East-Coast home of Paramount Pictures in the silent and early talking-picture eras, a center for independent filmmaking in the 1930s, and the U.S. Army Pictorial Center from World War II into the Cold War. After falling into disrepair in the early 1970s, the site has become a thriving cultural hub that includes Kaufman Astoria Studios and Museum of the Moving Image.

Using film stills, behind-the-scenes photographs, oral histories, film clips, and posters, the exhibition explores the rich legacy and renaissance of the studio complex. With material from silent-era films featuring Rudolph Valentino, early talking films starring the Marx Brothers, World War II training and propaganda films, such modern classics as The Age of Innocence, and television shows like Sesame Street, The Cosby Show, and Nurse Jackie, the exhibition reveals the significant role that the Astoria Studio continues to play in energizing its surrounding community and making moving-image history.

Lights, Camera, Astoria! is presented with generous support from Kaufman Astoria Studios. (A tiny portrait of Louise brooks can be seen in on the far wall.)

 

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Jean Paul Gaultier coat features Louise Brooks

PerezHilton.com reported on November 1 that Rihanna has been modeling a coat by designer Jean Paul Gaultier which bears a likeness of Louise Brooks.


The website noted, "RiRi looks especially seksi in a Miu Miu dress with dotted ruffle hem and a scarf tied around her head, and channels a punk rocker in a slashed The Clash tee by Chapel NYC and zippered Acne jacket. She also pays homage to 1920s actress Louise Brooks with a Jean Paul Gaultier coat bearing her likeness. Kinda random, but whatevs!"

Follow this link to see Rihanna herself wearing the coat.

As readers of this blog know, this is not the first time Gaultier has tipped his hat to Brooks. The French haute couture fashion designer has long had a fascination with certain silent film stars, including Louise Brooks.  This embroidered coat, from the designer's Autumn/Winter 2013 Women's Collection, features roll-up sleeves with embroidered detailing, a peaked collar with elastic fastening, and a large embroidered Louise Brooks graphic on the back. It is described as appealing to the fashion conscious as well as those looking for a timeless classic.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Louise Brooks, A Girl in Every Port plays Madison, Wisconsin

Director Howard Hawks had this to say about his choice of Louise Brooks for A Girl in Every Port (1928): "I wanted a different type of girl. I hired Louise because she's very sure of herself, she's very analytical, she's very feminine, but she's damn good and sure she's going to do what she wants to do."

This Howard Hawks-directed buddy film, in which Brooks plays a gold digger, is considered one of the legendary director's best silent efforts. It screens at the Cinematheque at the University of Wisconsin in Madison on December 7th, with live musical accompaniment provided by David Drazin.


Monday, November 4, 2013

Louise Brooks article on Huffington Post

I've posted a new article about Louise Brooks to the Huffington Post. It covers all the latest goings on. Read the article HERE. The slide show embedded in the article contains a very rare photograph of Louise Brooks that is also incredibly sexy. You must see to believe.


The contemporary film critic David Thomson once described Louise Brooks as "One of the most mysterious and potent figures in the history of the cinema . . .."

Earlier, the French critic Ado Kyrou said "Louise Brooks is the only woman who had the ability to transfigure no matter what film into a masterpiece. . . . Louise is the perfect apparition, the dream woman, the being without whom the cinema would be a poor thing. She is much more than a myth, she is a magical presence, a real phantom, the magnetism of the cinema."

His words were echoed by the German critic Lotte Eisner, who described Brooks as "An actress who needed no directing, but could move across the screen causing the work of art to be born by her mere presence."

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Barry Paris to introduce Louise Brooks film Beggars of Life in Pittsburgh, PA


Pittsburgh Post-Gazette movie critic and Louise Brooks biographer Barry Paris will introduce a screening of the sensational William Wellman directed film Beggars of Life (1928) at The Hollywood Theater (1449 Potomac Avenue) in Pittsburgh, PA. This special event, part of the theater's Silents, Please! silent film series, takes place on November 10th.

Live musical accompaniment will be provided by Daryl Fleming & the Public Domain, who have performed with and scored silent films in the region and abroad.More information and ticket availability at http://www.showclix.com/event/BeggarsOfLife.


Friday, November 1, 2013

Louise Brooks Film Series in Prague, Czech Republic

The films of Louise Brooks will be the subject of a series at the Kino Ponrepo starting November 14, the actress' birthday!

For those not familiar, the Ponrepo is the cinema of the National Film Archive in Prague, Czech Republic. The November 14th event marks the first of five screenings of five different Brooks films shown over the course of a month.

The Louise Brooks series follows a similar month long tribute to Clara Bow at the Kino Ponrepo. The Louise Brooks series was organized by the George Eastman House. 

The five films to be shown are Pandora's Box / Pandořina skříňka (screened on November 14th), Diary of a Lost Girl / Deník ztracené (screened on November 21st), A Girl in Every Port / Všude jiné děvče (screened on November 26th), Beggars of Life / Žebráci života (screened on December 3rd), and The Canary Murder Case / Případ zavražděného kanárka (screened on December 10th).

From the Kino Ponrepo website, here is the descriptive notes in Czech. The website also has an English language interface.

Louise Brooksová
14.11.2013 | 10.12.2013
Po říjnové Claře Bow představujeme další hvězdu přelomu němé a zvukové éry

Louise Brooksová – ve své době jedna z řady efemérních krásek stříbrného plátna, dnes kinematografická ikona nejvyšší autority. Bytostí byla jedinečnou, spontánní, provokativní a zcela bez pudu (společenské) sebezáchovy. Důsledky opakovaného vzdoru vůči studiu Paramount ji učinily páriou Hollywoodu.

Natočila pouhých šestnáct němých a sedm zvukových filmů, většina z nich na jakoukoli výjimečnost aspirovat nemohla. A k tomu navíc podstatná část z těch předzvukových titulů zůstává mimo dosah objektivního zhodnocení, protože stále přetrvává v kategorii ztracených. Nicméně Brooksová inspirativně zasáhla do mnoha dalších uměleckých děl, a to nejen coby typ moderní ženy obdařené nadčasovou krásou. Popkultura od amerických komiksů přes filmy Godarda, Caraxe či Tarantina až po repertoár novovlnných kapel OMD a  Siouxsie and the Banches je plná odkazů na její filmové postavy, soukromý život či neotřelou vizáž.

Za tento významový přesah až k současnosti vděčí Brooksová, pro niž rok 1938 znamenal naprostý konec dohasínající filmové kariéry, zejména dvěma hrdinkám z filmů vedených režií George W. Pabsta a vlastně také pařížské retrospektivě z počátku 50. let minulého století. Jak s Lulu z Pandořiny skřínky, tak s Tymian z Deníku ztracené bytostně splynula v živoucí postavy symbolických rozměrů stvořené z autorské fikce, režisérské jasnozřivosti a především vlastní osobnostní autenticity. Tvůrčí vklad Brooksové byl ovšem ryze intuitivní, vědomé pouto s těmito postavami ji přinesla teprve až sebereflexe pozdního věku zanesená do autobiografické knihy Lulu v Hollywoodu.

Retrospektivu pořádáme ve spolupráci s George Eastman House – významnou americkou archivní institucí, která od 50. let soustavně pečuje o hereččin odkaz.

Filmy:
Deník ztracené, Pandořina skříňka , Případ zavražděného kanárka , Všude jiné děvče , Žebráci života
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