Archive for September, 2017

Thursday, September 28th, 2017

Lasting Impression

What’s better than a chilling ghost story? How about four ghost stories rolled into one? Kwaidan (1965) is based on a collection of Japanese ghost stories published in 1904. The author was Lafcadio Hearn, a folklorist of Greek-Irish ancestry, who based his stories on translations of old Japanese texts. Sixty years later, Japanese director Masaki […]

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Tuesday, September 19th, 2017

The Sound of Silence

In one of the finest books ever written about comedic film, The Silent Clowns, Walter Kerr refers to Buster Keaton as the most silent of the silent film comedians: The silence was related to another deeply rooted quality — that immobility, the sense of alert repose we have so often seen in him. Keaton could […]

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Tuesday, September 19th, 2017

Sparkle and Shine

Eighty-one years after its release, how do we sort out the merits of a movie like Camille (1936)? Strictly in terms of Garbo’s performance, it may be her finest sound film. Yet with all her films (with the exception of Lubitsch’s atypical Ninotchka), there was always something that kept the whole from being better than […]

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Sunday, September 3rd, 2017

Golden Treasure

Greed and human nature — it’s a common theme in both movies and literature, but rarely has it been handled as expertly as in The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948). Following his service in World War II, director John Huston found the ideal project for his next film. It would be based on the […]

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