Saturday, September 30, 2017

Beggars of Life, starring Louise Brooks, in the news

The Harvard Film Archive in Cambridge, Massachusetts has just announced it will be hosting a major retrospective of the films of director William Wellman. The retrospective, "The Legends of William Wellman," runs October 27th through November 26th. The series will include all of the acclaimed director's greatest films, from Wings (1927) to The Public Enemy (1931), A Star is Born (1937), and The Ox-Bow Incident (1943), as well as lesser known gems like Night Nurse (1931) and Wild Boys of the Road (1933). More information about the series, including a complete line-up of films, can be found HERE.

The first film to be shown in the series is Beggars of Life (1928), starring Louise Brooks. The silent classic will be shown on Friday October 27 at 7pm, with live musical accompaniment. The Harvard Film Archive description follows.

Beggars of Life

Directed by William Wellman. With Wallace Beery, Louise Brooks, Richard Arlen
US 1928, 35mm, b/w, silent, 91 min

A gruesome discovery followed by a sordid tale of sexual abuse—recounted through an ingenious double-exposed montage sequence—introduces Richard Arlen’s hungry tramp to Louise Brooks’ fugitive disguised as a boy. From that dramatic opener, the couple steals off into a blue-tinted night and reluctantly joins a band of vagabonds. Immediately, the presence of a woman in the midst of a group of desperate men adds an unsettling disturbance to the film and to their tenuous coalition. Wellman steadily maintains this air of horror and humor as the motley, volatile crew travels from land to train with the lord of the hoboes, Wallace Beery’s unpredictable Oklahoma Red, who revels in intimidation as a means of entertainment—even holding an absurdly elaborate “kangaroo court” to decide the fate of the interlopers. In this hardscrabble atmosphere, the appearance of love is so unusual that it acts as a kind of deus ex machina, stunning the plot and sending it off and away down Wellman’s mysterious, dark tracks.

And that's not all the news.... Beggars of Life was the focus of a radio program hosted by Hollywood personality Dick Dinman. Follow THIS LINK to Turner Classic Movies "TCM Movie News" to listen, or tune in to WMPG in Portland, Maine.

Dick Dinman & William Wellman Jr. Salute the BEGGARS OF LIFE!

DICK DINMAN & WILLIAM WELLMAN JR. SALUTE THE "BEGGARS OF LIFE": Popular author, actor, producer and raconteur William Wellman Jr. and producer/host Dick Dinman rave about Kino Lorber's marvelous Blu-ray release of legendary director William Wellman's favorite of his silent films BEGGARS OF LIFE in which the notorious Louise Brooks plays a train-hopping hobo who dresses like a boy to escape the law and discourage the lecherous advances of Wallace Beery and his rambunctious band of hoboes.

The award-winning DICK DINMAN'S DVD CLASSICS CORNER ON THE AIR is the only show devoted to Golden Age Movie Classics as they become available on DVD and Blu-ray. Your producer/host Dick Dinman includes a generous selection of classic scenes, classic film music and one-on-one interviews with stars, producers, and directors. To hear these as well as other DVD CLASSICS CORNER ON THE AIR shows please go to or

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