Archived Live On-Line Events

Lock-down may be preventing us from getting out to see silent film events ‘in the flesh’.  But don’t forget that there are still opportunities to see films at live On-Line screenings.  Forthcoming events include;

Sunday 15 November

Episode 34 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format is three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment.  This week’s films include Teddy At The Throttle (1917) starring Keystone Teddy, Gloria Swanson, Bobby Vernon and Wallace Beery together with Papa’s Boy (1927) starring Lloyd Hamilton, with Glen Cavender, Betty Boyd and Al Thompson.  The event streams at 8pm UK time on You Tube. Further details here.       (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Saturday 14 November

Cinephobe.tv present Hangman’s House (Dir. John Ford,US, 1928) ‘Citizen’ Hogan (Victor McLaglan) is an Irish Republican patriot with a price on his head, serving in Algiers, where he is highly respected by his Foreign Legionnaire comrades. After receiving a telegram, he asks permission to go back to Ireland to settle a matter involving family honor by killing D’Arcy, a fortune-hunting opportunist who has turned British informer. Back in Ireland Lord Justice O’Brien (Hobart Bosworth), who has the unenviable reputation of being a hanging judge and is haunted with self-doubt, is terminally ill and close to death. He tries to ensure his daughter Connaught’s (June Collyer) future welfare by coercing her to renounce her love for the upstanding but poor Dermot McDermot and marry the despicably unscrupulous but affluent D’Arcy, the man Hogan has returned to murder.  Director John Ford’s imaginary Ireland had its dark side, as reflected in The Informer (1935), The Plough and the Stars (1936), and in this late silent film, in which Ford spins a gothic atmosphere around McLanglen’s mission and the forbidding mansion of the title, but with the added bonus of John Wayne, then a USC student moonlighting as a prop man at Fox, being clearly visible as an extra in a racing sequence.  With recorded score.  Watch it here at 2.05pm.

Wednesday 11 November

Another one from cinephobe.tv is Outside The Law (Dir. Tod Browning, USA, 1920)   Considered to be one of the first psychologically driven films in the gangster genre, the picture was the second film on which Browning worked with Lon Chaney. The contrasting dual roles Browning wrote for Chaney as a heroic Chinese servant and an evil gangster are considered to have solidified the long-lasting collaboration between the two.  In the film, Silent Madden, a criminal leader in San Francisco, and his gangster daughter Molly (Priscilla Dean) have forsaken a life of crime after receiving counsel from Chang Lo (Lon Chaney), a Confucian philosopher living in Chinatown. But when ruthless gangster Black Mike Sylva (Chaney) frames Molly’s father for murder, it causes her to lose faith in abiding by the law and prompts her return to a life of crime by joining Black Mike’s gang, unaware that it was he who was responsible for her father’s downfall.  With cross and double cross piling up, will Molly get her revenge on Black Mike?  The original 1920 release is now thought lost.  The only surviving version is a 1926 re-release in a somewhat truncated form.  Find out more at silentfilm.org.  With recorded score.  Watch it here 11,00am.

As part of their Tod Browning double bill cinephobe.tv now present The Blackbird (Dir. Tod Browning, USA, 1926) In yet another of the ten films Browning made with Lon Chaney, here Chaney plays a notorious Limehouse criminal, Dan Tate who lives a double life. As feared underworld figure The Blackbird, he hides in plain sight posing as his imaginary brother, the Bishop, a kind-but-crippled preacher who runs the local mission. Infatuated with charming French music hall performer Fifi Lorraine (Renee Adorée), Tate’s affections turn to envy when she falls for West End Bertie (Owen Moore), a handsome gentleman thief. With jealousy clouding his reason, Tate employs both of his identities in a sinister scheme to destroy his rival and keep Fifi for himself.  The film is a somewhat conventional crime melodrama rather than the usual Browning/Chaney horror outing. Chaney is on good form, the London Limehouse setting is evocative (if not all that accurate) and any film with Renee Adoree is worth a look.  With recorded score.  Watch it here at 12.15pm.

Monday 9 November

Retroformat Silent Films from Los Angeles presents Keystone Tonight: three 1915 comedies: Mack Swain in Ambrose’s Little Hatchet, Fatty Arbuckle and Mabel Normand at the San Francisco Worlds Fair and in Mabel & Fatty’s Wash Day,  with music by Cliff Retallick!.  Event screens at 7.30 PDT (02.30 am 10 Nov UK time).  Click here  to watch

Sunday 8 November

Another gem from cinephobe.tv is Love One Another (Dir. C T Dreyer, DenGer, 1922)  Hanne-Liebe, a young Jewish girl, has been the subject of anti-semitic prejudice among her Russian neighbours since childhood. As the result of a cruel intrigue she is expelled from her school and travels to St. Petersburg where her brother Jakov, a wealthy lawyer, lives.  When Hanne-Liebe meets back up with Sascha, a revolutionary-minded student from her hometown, they fall in love.  But as unrest in 1905 Russia spills over into open revolution, lives not just relationships are in jeopardy.  This was the first film directed by Dreyer in Germany.  But the original German version is lost, and it was only recently that a Russian version was found at the Cinémathèque de Toulouse. The film was apparently highly regarded by Soviet historians as an interesting document on the 1905 revolution although it was not a popular success on its first release and is now largely forgotten.  However, few, if any, films from this period depict the destructive power of racial hatred as clearly as Love one Another and  the violence of the final pogrom still retains its power to shock.  Find out more at  acinemahistory.com.  With recorded score. You can watch it here at 6.15pm UK time.

Episode 33 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format is three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment.  This week’s films include; Loose Change (1928) starring Jack Duffy, with Neal Burns, Lorraine Eddy, Glen Cavender and Winnie Law;  Versus Sledge Hammers (1915) starring Ben Turpin, with Margaret Joslin, Victor Potel and Harry Todd;  and, The Immigrant (1917) starring Charlie Chaplin, with Edna Purviance.   The event streams at 8pm UK time on You Tube. Further details here.       (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Saturday 7 November

Its not quite ‘On-Line’ but worth a mention nevertheless, On Talking Pictures TV, don’t miss Bob Monkhouse with All In Good Fun (1956) as he introduces the golden age of slapstick comedy with clips from Mack Sennett, Max Linder, Chaplin, The Keystone Kops and many more. Monkhouse was one of the great champions of silent comedy during the 1950s and 1960s so its great to see this old compilation getting an airing (despite the ungodly screening hour!!).  On UK terrestrial TV, Channel 81, at 02.15am (!!! yes, AM!)

Cinephobe.TV presents The Seventh Day (Dir. Henry King, USA, 1922) an Inspiration Pictures film featuring Richard Barthelmess and Anne Cornwall. A group of rich, spoiled college kids, not allowed to drink alcohol in their favorite New England restaurant, decide to take off in ‘daddy’s yacht’ for a weekend party. Unfortunately, the yacht breaks down in a Maine fishing village. Amongst the rich incomers, engaged couple Reggie and Patricia are taken with the quaint village and its quainter ways, but also with two locals, Betty Alden and her brother John. Patricia begins to fall for John while her fiancé takes a similar liking to Betty. But in this country versus city folk drama, tensions are sure to rise.  Long thought lost, The Seventh Day was rediscovered in a Czech archive and a restored version with English inter-titles produced in the late 1980s.  However, on seeing the newly restored version, director Henry King reportedly considered it one of his worst pictures and regretted that it had survived.  But see for yourself today.       With recorded score.  You can watch it here at 12.00noon UK time

Cinephobe.TV presents Tol’able David (Dir, Henry King, USA, 1921) But this film definitely is a Henry King classic. Young David Kinemon (Richard Barthelmess), son of West Virginia tenant farmers, longs to be treated like a man by his family and neighbors, especially Esther Hatburn, the pretty girl who lives with her grandfather on a nearby farm. However, he is continually reminded that he is still a boy, “tol’able” enough, but no man. But he eventually gets the chance to ‘prove himself’  against local outlaw Iscah Hatburn and his sons. Henry King co-founded Inspiration Pictures with the actor Richard Barthelmess in 1921 and Tol’able David  was their first and greatest success. The screenplay, based on the story by the popular author Joseph Hergesheimer, was adapted by King and Edmund Goulding. King imbued the film with an affection for rural life that is untainted by false sentiment and which is based on his own observations of American types, made while traveling the country as an actor. A major box office success, the acclaimed film was voted a Photoplay 1921 “medal of honor” and is seen by critics and viewers as one of the classics of silent film. Find out more at silentfilm.org With recorded score.  You can watch it here at 1.05PM UK time.

Sunday 1 November

Silent Horror Shorts – presented as part of the Abertoir 2020 Film Festival, a collection of eight silent gems, with a (somewhat vaguely) horror theme.  They include delights from the earliest days of silent film, such as Un homme de Têtes (Georges Méliès – 1898, France), The X-Ray Fiend (George Albert Smith – 1897, UK) and An Over-Incubated Baby (Robert W. Paul – 1901, UK); some French science-fantasy with Voyage autour d’un Étoile (Gaston Velle – 1906, France) and The Black Pearl (Segundo de Chomón – 1908, France); as well as classic Hollywood comedy with Stan Laurel in Dr. Pyckle and Mr. Pryde (Percy Pembroke – 1925, USA) a spoof on the famous Robert Louis Stevenson story.  With a specially commissioned score written and, performed by  pianist Paul Shallcross, who will be also bringing some light-hearted insights into the films themselves, and especially some mistakes to look out for!  To watch, click here(NB.  This is a one-off event, not available to watch on catch-up)

Episode 32 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format is three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment.  This week’s films include; The Village Chestnut (1918) starring Louise Fazenda and Chester Conklin,; and, Only Me (1929) starring Lupino Lane, with Wallace Lupino. The event streams at 8pm UK time on You Tube. Further details here.       (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Saturday 31 October

Cinephobe.TV is certainly proving to be a little treasure trove of silent film rarities, particularly of the horror and thriller genres.  Today they are screening The Bells (Dir. James Young, US, 1926).  Mathias (Lionel Barrymore), an Alsatian innkeeper, murders a rich Polish Jew staying at his inn.  But Mathias’ conscience will not let him rest, and the murdered man’s spirit drives the innkeeper to the brink of madness. When the dead man’s brother calls for an inquest and brings with him a sideshow mesmerist  (Boris Karloff) supposedly able to read minds, the pressure on Mathias becomes intolerable. This is not a film I have seen but it comes with some positive reviews.  Perhaps not a classic but well made nevertheless with a stirring performance from Barrymore, an early role for Karloff and more than a hint of Caligari about it!  Find out more at  moviessilently.com.  With recorded soundtrack.  Screens at 13.45pm UK time.  Click here to watch.

Wednesday 28 October

Film historian, freelance writer and critic Pamela Hutchinson presents  Louise Brooks – Lulu and Beyond. an on-line talk about the life and legacy of 1920s star Louise Brooks.  Born in Kansas, Brooks made her name as first, one of the most beautiful dancers on Broadway, and then as one of the most rebellious starlets in silent-era Hollywood – known for her insouciant face, hot temper and distinctive flapper haircut. Her lasting fame was secured by a trio of art films she made in Europe after turning her back on Los Angeles, starting with the German silent Pandora’s Box, in which she plays Lulu, a dangerous Weimar femme fatale who brings the men and women who love her to their knees. After seeing all there was to see in the movie industry on both sides of the Atlantic, Brooks lived to tell the tale, and to be reclaimed as a true star of the early cinema. In her later life, her uniquely provocative voice shone in a series of articles that told the unpalatable truth about the movie business.  The event is free but you need to register here

The Kennington Bioscope present the eleventh of their Live Stream Broadcasts on the KBTV  channel on You Tube at 7:30.  In an impressively high tech format they present silent films introduced by Michelle Facey (@best2vilmabanky) and accompanied live by pianists including Cyrus Gabrysh and John Sweeney.   Tonight’s event is a halloween special of magic and mystery, centered around the 1913 German feature  Der Geheimnisvolle Klub (The Mysterious Club).  When Gerhard Bern receives news that, for no ostensible reason, his brother has committed suicide, he travels to Rotterdam to investigate. There he meets and falls in love with the lovely Ilse (Ilse Bois) but danger looms when he to joins The Mysetrious Club.  In a full programme thet are also screening; L’antre de la sorcière (The Witch’s Lair aka The Bewitched Shepherd) (France 1906);  Physique Diabolique (France 1912); and, La fée des roches noires (The Fairy of the Black Rocks) (France 1902) There may also be a surprise extra film, just to keep us on our toes!  Check out our review here of a previous KBTV episode to get an idea of the format.  You can watch  here .  Or why not subscribe here for future event details delivered straight to your In-Box.    (NB  This event will  also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Cinema Detroit presents Haxan: Witchcraft Through the Ages (Dir. Benjamin Christensen, Swe., 1922) ) A fictionalized documentary with dramatic reconstructions showing the evolution of witchcraft, from its pagan roots to its confusion with hysteria in modern (1922) Europe. Based partly on Christensen’s study of the  Malleus Maleficarum, a 15th-century German guide for inquisitors, Häxan is a study of how superstition and the misunderstanding of diseases and mental illness could lead to the hysteria of the witch hunts.  Although it won acclaim in Denmark and Sweden when first released, Haxan was heavily censored or banned outright in many countries.  But it is now considered to be amongst Christensen’s finest work, a witches’ brew of the scary, the grotesque, and the darkly humorous. Find out more at thedevilsmanor.blogspot.co.uk .  With live piano accompaniment from New York by Ben Model.  Film screens at 7.30pm EDT (11.30 UK time).  See here  for tickets.

Monday 26 October

Retroformat Silent Films from Los Angeles presents Spooky ‘Tunes, a  collection of vintage animated cartoons featuring cartoon stars like Felix the Cat and Pete the Pup to help get you into the spirit of Halloween.  With a live original score by musician Cliff Retallick plus special guest film archivist, historian and distributor of early animated cartoons, Tommy José Stathes (@CartoonsonFilm ).  Event screens at 7.30 PDT (02.30 am 27 Oct UK time).  Click here  to watch

Cinephobe.TV presents The Show (Dir. Tod Browning, US, 1927)  Cock Robin is the swaggering ballyhoo man of a Hungarian sideshow known as the Palace of Illusions. The highlight of the show is a reenactment of Salome’s dance of the seven veils, replete with the beheading of Jokanaan. The performer portraying Salome is in love with Cock Robin. Jealous, sinister The Greek is determined to eliminate that competition.  Another dose of grand guignol from master of the macabre Browning, starring John Gilbert, Renee Adoree and Lionel Barrymore With recorded score.  You can watch it here

Sunday 25 October

Episode 31 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format is three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment.  This week’s films include;  Deviled Crabs (1917) starring Pokes & Jabs (Bobby Burns & Walter Stull), with Edna Reynolds; Local Showers (1916) starring Harry Watson, Jr. (“Musty Suffer”), with Dan Crimmins, Della Connor and H.H. McCollum; and, The Haunted House (1921) starring Buster Keaton, with Virginia Fox, Joe Roberts, Paddy McGuire and Eddie Cline.   The event normally streams at 8pm UK time but just for this week it will be at 7pm on You Tube. Further details here.       (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Toronto‘s Silent Revue Cinema presents The Phantom Carriage (Dir. Victor Sjostrom, Sw, 1921).  Apparently a favorite of Charlie Chaplin, The Phantom Carriage would influence Sjöström’s Swedish compatriot Ingmar Bergman with his radical depiction of death in The Seventh Seal,  and even inspire the “Here’s Johnny” axe sequence in Kubrick’s The Shining. Simply put: it’s a horror icon. Over 5 months in production and balking at European censors’ concerns over depicting the supernatural, The Phantom Carriage is based on Selma Lageröf’s 1912 novel Thy Soul Shall Bare Witness! and stars none other than the director himself as David Holm, a drunkard forced to reckon with his wasted life by a ghostly carriage driver. Set in a series of flashbacks and featuring groundbreaking special effects, the film eerily captures a distinctively Scandinavian morbidity, yet isn’t without hope. A masterpiece in any right, it’s the perfect Halloween choice! Preceded by the animated Felix the Cat in Switches Witches (1927).  With recorded accompaniment by Marilyn Lerner.  Get your ticket here

Saturday 24 October

AFI Silver Theater presents The Mark Of Zorro (Dir. Fred Niblo, US, 1920)   Don Diego Vega (Douglas Fairbanks) masquerades as an ineffectual fop to bamboozle his enemies and conceal his secret persona: ‘Zorro’: avenger of the oppressed. The first King of Hollywood – dashing, athletic Douglas Fairbanks, pretty much defined the swashbuckling genre with this rip-roaring adventure flick. Featuring horseback stunts, witty chase sequences and sword fighting, this entertaining romp achieves a satisfying blend of humour and heroics that remains the benchmark for action films today.  With live piano accompaniment by Ben Model.  Screens at 3.00pm EDT.  Screening is free or pay-what-you-can but you need to register.  Details here

Wednesday 21 October

The Cinema Arts Centre in Huntington, NY presents The Penalty (Dir. Wallace Worsley, US, 1920). Lon Chaney demonstrates his unparalleled flair for on-screen transformation with his macabre characterisation of ‘Blizzard’ – a tortured, criminal mastermind. A young boy has both his legs needlessly amputated by an inexperienced surgeon and grows up to become “master of the underworld”, driven to terrible deeds by his passion for sadistic revenge. The film is considered Chaney’s break-out role, cementing his reputation as master of the gruesome and grotesque. Chaney famously refused the use of trick camera angles to simulate his ‘deformity’, forcing his legs into leather stumps in a tightly bent position that was so painful he could only wear them for ten minutes at a time.   With live piano accompaniment by Ben Model.  Screens at 7.00pm EDT.  Screening is free or pay-what-you-can but you need to register.  Details here

 

Tuesday 20 October

Knoxferatu is an annual silent horror film event in Knoxville, Tennessee, pairing silent features and shorts with live musicians for an unforgettable Halloween-season cinema experience.  Rather than canceling the event during the pandemic, Knoxferatu is breaking out of Knoxville with a live streaming mini-event for everyone.  One of the audience’s favorite parts of Knoxferatu every year is the slate of creepy, weird, and obscure shorts. So, for the virtual mini-edition of Knoxferatu, the event will be completely made up of shorts.  Knoxferatu V will feature some of the most popular comedy-horror shorts from past years, as well as some new picks (No details of films to be screened).  With live piano accompaniment by Ben Model.  Screens at 7.30pm EDT (12.30 PM UK time).  Screening is free but donations encouraged.  Details here

 

Sunday 18 October

Episode 30 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format is three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment.  This week’s films yet to be announced.  The event streams at 8pm UK time on You Tube. Further details here.       (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

 

Monday 12 October

Retroformat Silent Films, live from Los Angeles, presents a fortnightly silent screening. Tonight they are spoiling us with an exceptionally rare and cracking good horror double bill.  First up is Frankenstein (Dir. J Searle Darley, US, 1910).  Generally recognised as the first (albeit loose) adaption of Mary Shelly’s novel, starring Charles Ogle as the monster and Mary Fuller as the doctor’s wife.  Then we have Ghosts (Dir. George Nichols, US, 1915), an adaption of a Henrik Ibsen novel and the story of greed, ambition, marital infidelity, incest and syphilitic madness.  Now how did they get all that past the censors? With a knock-out performance by Henry B Walthall.  Anyway, you can watch it  here  on their You Tube channel (broadcast 7.30 pm US West Coast Time, 3.30am 4 Aug UK time!!).     (NB  This event will  also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

 

Sunday 11 October

The London Film Festival in partnership with the Kennington Bioscope present The Cheaters (1930),  one of Australia’s major surviving silent films.  When embezzler Bill Marsh (Arthur Greenaway) emerges from jail he works with his daughter Paula (Marie Lorraine), who serves as bait, targeting wealthy victims. He is also seeking revenge on businessman John Travers (John Faulkner), who turned him into the police. However, Paula falls in love with Travers’ son and starts to doubt her future in a life of crime. Highly regarded for its set design – including some striking details – mood and atmosphere, and featuring stunningly vivid tinting, The Cheaters was also unusual in being a film produced, directed and starring Sydney’s Isabel, Phyllis, and Paulette McDonagh, who bucked a predominantly male film world and successfully produced four feature films between 1926 and 1933.  Find out more at wfpp.columbia.edu.  Film screens at 1pm UK time, here.  With live piano accompaniment from Cyrus Gabrysch.  (NB  This film will be available to watch on ‘catch-up’ until 1pm UK time on 14 October)

Episode 29 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format is three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment.  This week’s films include T Bound (1924) starring Sid Smith, with Cliff Bowes, Virginia Vance, Bobby Burns and Now Or Never (1921) starring Harold Lloyd, with Mildred Davis, Anna May Bilson, Norma Nichols and William Gillespie  The event streams at 8pm UK time on You Tube. Further details here.       (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

 

Saturday 10 October

The 39th Pordonone Silent Film Festival in this year’s On-Line version presents Ballettens datter (Daughter of the Ballet) (Dir: Holger-Madsen, Den 1913)    Count de Croisset proposes to the celebrated dancer Odette Blanc. He puts all his love, his fortune and his title at her feet – on one condition: She must give up her job as a dancer. Odette gives him her ‘yes’ with the feeling that she will never miss the theater once she has become a countess. But one day she gets an offer she can’t refuse.  Director Holger-Madsen’s superb eye for evocative compositions provides the ideal framework for influential dancer Rita Sacchetto, starring as a charismatic ballerina torn between love and her art.  With musical accompaniment  by John Sweeney. Further details here.  The film will remain available for 24 hours to view on ‘catch-up’.

The 39th Pordonone Silent Film Festival in this year’s On-Line version presents Laurel or Hardy in 5 shorts. The genius of Laurel and Hardy was already in evidence before they first teamed up. Here we present 5 riotous shorts predating their legendary partnership, each one joyfully showcasing their individual talents.
Films  The Serenade (1916), The Rent Collector (1921), Detained (1924), Moonlight and Noses (1925) and When Knights Were Cold (1923).  With musical accompaniment  by Neil Brand. Further details here.  The film will remain available for 24 hours to view on ‘catch-up’.

 

Friday 9 October

The 39th Pordonone Silent Film Festival in this year’s On-Line version presents A Romance of the Redwoods (Dir: Cecil B. DeMille, US, 1917)  When the orphaned Jennie Lawrence (Mary Pickford)  journeys to California to live with her uncle, she discovers him to be dead and his place taken by a criminal impostor, but his threats intimidate her into silence. Lacking money and protection, she  must acknowledge the imposter publicly as her uncle in order to continue to receive food, shelter, and his protection. A stunning new restoration of this Gold Rush Western with Mary Pickford under the assured direction of Cecil B. DeMille, featuring a bold central performance and dramatic location work.  With musical accompaniment  by Donald Sosin and Joanna Seaton.  Further details here.  The film will remain available for 24 hours to view on ‘catch-up’.

Thursday 8 October

The 39th Pordonone Silent Film Festival in this year’s On-Line version presents Abwege (The Devious Path) (Dir: G W Pabst, Ger, 1928)  An affluent lawyer (Gustav Diessl) neglects his wife (Brigitte Helm) and disapproves of her fashionable friends. Bored and sexually frustrated, she retaliates by abandoning herself to the pleasures of jazz-age Berlin. Featuring one of the most extraordinary, decadent nightclub scenes in all of Weimar cinema, this lesser-known film, now newly restored and ripe for rediscovery, sees director G W Pabst on top form. A great realist of Weimar-era cinema, Pabst uses a marital crisis to paint a shimmering portrait of society.  In yet another role that she was born to play, Brigitte Helm gives a stunning performance as the bored wife. With musical accompaniment  by Mauro Colombis.  Further details here.  The film will remain available for 24 hours to view on ‘catch-up’.

Wednesday 7 October

The 39th Pordonone Silent Film Festival in this year’s On-Line version presents Oι Απάχηδες των Αθηνών ( The Apaches of Athens) (Dir: Dimitris Gaziadis, Gr 1930) Pivoting around picturesque old Athens of the 1920s, and its namesake, the celebrated operetta by Nikos Hadjiapostolou, this adaptation invites us to follow the adventures and romantic entanglements of an Athenian “apache” or city tramp: Kostas, the “Prince”. After saving two men from taking a beating from some bullies, the Prince has a chance encounter with the lovely young seamstress, Titika, and just like that, they fall head-over-heels in love with each other.  But the road to true love can be a rocky one! An historic Greek film of 1930, deemed lost for many decades, The Apaches of Athens was rediscovered in the Cinémathèque Française archives and  restored at the L’Immagine Ritrovata Laboratory.  It constitutes an attempt to create the first “singing and sound” film produced in Greece.  The film, starring some legendary figures of the Greek music scene, such as Petros Kyriakos, Mary Sayanou, Petros Epitropakis and Giannis Prineas, is an important link in the history of early Greek cinema.   With recorded orchestral accompaniment by the Greek Radio Symphony Orchestra. Further details here.  The film will remain available for 24 hours to view on ‘catch-up’.

Tuesday 6 October

The 39th Pordonone Silent Film Festival in this year’s On-Line version presents České hrady a zámky (Dir: Karel Hašler, CZ, 1914) [short] Noted thespian Karel Hašler appears in this self-reflexive comedy short about an actor running late for a performance who must dash through the Czech countryside to arrive at his Prague theatre in time.  Plus  La tempesta in un cranio (Dir: Carlo Campogalliani, It, 1921)  An anarchic, quasi-surreal Italian comedy of multiple delights in which the timorous scion of a wealthy family is gaslit by his friends in order to prove that his fears of hereditary insanity are hogwash.  With musical accompaniment  by Gunter A Buchwald and Frank Bockius.  Further details here.  The films will remain available for 24 hours to view on ‘catch-up’.

Monday 5 October

The 39th Pordonone Silent Film Festival in this year’s On-Line version presents Toodles, Tom and Trouble (Dir: Lloyd Lonergan, US, 1915) [short] Pandemonium breaks out when Tom thinks baby Toodles is stolen and all signs suggest that Trouble the collie is to blame. Don’t worry, the Thanhouser dog Lady continued her career after making this short!  Plus  Where Lights Are Low  (Dir: Colin Campbell, US, 1921)  Sessue Hayakawa achieved global stardom by combining matinee idol glamour with at times problematic ethnic characterizations. Here he’s a Chinese prince seeking to rescue his love from slave traders in San Francisco.   With musical accompaniment  by Philip Carli.  Further details here.  The films will remain available for 24 hours to view on ‘catch-up’.

Sunday 4 October

The 39th Pordonone Silent Film Festival in this year’s On-Line version presents The Brilliant Biograph, an eye-opening compilation designed to change our understanding of early cinema forever. Meticulous restoration work on Victorian-era 68mm films reveals a breathtaking clarity whose beauty we experience emotionally.  With  musical accompaniment  by Daan van den Hurk.  Further details here.  The films will remain available for 24 hours to view on ‘catch-up’.

The 39th Pordonone Silent Film Festival in this year’s On-Line version presents Guo Feng (National Customs) (Dir: Luo Mingyou and Zhu Shilin, Chi, 1935)  Chinese silent film remains criminally unavailable, making this a rare opportunity to see a true masterwork starring two great actresses in a characterful story of sisters in love with the same man.  With  musical accompaniment  by Gabriel Thibaudeau.  Further details here.  The films will remain available for 24 hours to view on ‘catch-up’.

Saturday 3 October

The Buster Keaton Society present Buster’s Big Birthday Bash – A Zoom Watch Party.  Absolutely no idea as to what this will comprise, but given who’s running it and given also that we’re all Buster fans its got to be worth a look.  To take part go hereMeeting ID: 847 2629 0453,  Passcode: Damfino

The 39th Pordonone Silent Film Festival in this year’s On-Line version presents The Urge to Travel.  Left homebound by the Covid nightmare and yearning to travel, this afternoon programme captures that longing with eight short travelogues selected to feed the intense desire to return to beloved locales and explore new places.  Films include  Un voyage Abracadabrant (1919), New York (1911), Planty krakowskie (1929), Un voyage au Caire (Nos vedettes à l’étranger) (1928), Over Besseggen på motorsykkel (1929), Belgique pittoresque: Ostende; Bruges (1921), Svatojanske proudy (1912), Trieste (anni ’30), Londonerbilleder (c.1920).  With musical accompaniment  by Jose Maria Serralde Ruiz.  Further details here The films will remain available for 24 hours to view on ‘catch-up’.

The 39th Pordonone Silent Film Festival in this year’s On-Line version presents   Penrod and Sam (Dir: William Beaudine, US 1923).  Americana at its best, centered on a group of scamps and the endearing mischief they make. The film, which prefigures Boyhood in its nostalgic look at childhood, surprisingly avoids much of the era’s racial stereotypes.  With musical accompaniment  by Stephen Horne  Further details here The film will remain available for 24 hours to view on ‘catch-up’.

Wednesday 30 September

The Kennington Bioscope present the tenth  of their Live Stream Broadcasts on the KBTV  channel on You Tube at 7:30.  In an impressively high tech format they present silent films introduced by Michelle Facey (@best2vilmabanky) and accompanied live by pianist John Sweeney and Costas Fotopoulos and with specially recorded accompaniment from Lillian Henley and Colin Sell.  Tonight’s event comprises a veritable cornucopia of silent film gems including;  Our Film Stars – Photoplay Magazine Screen Supplement #6 (USA 1919) with behind the scenes footage of silent stars;  Flux The Cat (NL 1929) – an animated U.S. Royal Cord tyre advert.;  Le Dytique (The Water Beetle) (FR 1912) – Microscopic shots of  a family of water beetles;  L’orgie Romaine (Lions of the Tyrant) (FR 1911) – a hand-tinted historical melodrama directed by Louis Feuillade;  Le Chien Insaisissable (The Elusive Dog) (FR 1912) – A shaggy-dog story, and;  Old Isaacson’s Diamonds (USA 1915) – Another episode from The Girl Detective, Kalem’s popular series starring Ruth Roland as a ‘society girl’ employed as a special investigator.  Check out our review here of a previous episode to get an idea of the format.  You can watch  here .  Or why not subscribe here for future event details delivered straight to your In-Box.    (NB  This event will  also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

The Cinema Arts Centre in Huntington NY presents Our Hospitality (Dir. Buster Keaton/John G Blystone, US, 1923)  This is a riotous satire of family feuds and Southern codes of honor. In 1831, Keaton leaves his home in New York to take charge of his family mansion down South. En route, Keaton befriends pretty Natalie Talmadge (Keaton’s real-life wife at the time), who invites him to dine at her family home. Upon meeting Talmadge’s father and brothers, Keaton learns that he is the last surviving member of a family with whom Talmadge’s kin have been feuding for over 20 years.   In the climactic waterfall stunt a dummy stood in for Talmadge but Keaton used no doubles, and nearly lost his life as a result.  This 7-reel silent film represents the only joint appearance of Buster Keaton and Natalie Talmadge; Keaton hoped that by spending several weeks on location with his wife, he could patch up their shaky marriage (it didn’t work). Also appearing are two other members of the Keaton family: Keaton’s ex-vaudevillian father Joe (who performs an eye-popping “high kick”) and his son Joseph Keaton IV, playing Buster as a baby. With live on-line piano accompaniment from Ben Model.  The event is free (or Pay-What-You-Can) and streams at 7pm EST (Midnight UK time) but you need to register to take part.  More details here

Monday 28 September

Retroformat Silent Films, live from Los Angeles, presents a fortnightly silent screening. Tonight’s film is The Bargain (1914), Hollywood (and real) cowboy Willian S Hart’s first feature. The second Hart Western to be named to the National Film Registry (after Hell’s Hinges (1916) ), selected apparently on account of Hart’s charisma, the film’s authenticity and its realistic portrayal of the Western genre.  Find out more at  www.loc.gov. Watch here  on their You Tube channel (broadcast 7.30 pm US West Coast Time, 3.30am 4 Aug UK time!!).     (NB  This event will  also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Sunday 27 September

Episode 27 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format is three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment.  This week’s films Be Reasonable (1921) starring Billy Bevan, with Mildred June, Eddie Gribbon, Ethel Teare, Bobby Dunn, Al Cooke, Kewpie Morganand Tiny Sandford; plus Remember When? (1925) starring Harry Langdon, with Natalie Kingston, Vernon Dent, Sam Lufkin, Irving Bacon, William McCall and Anna May the elephant.   The event streams at 8pm UK time on You Tube. Further details here.       (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Bristol’s Slapstick Festival present Slapstick’s Big Comedy Night In.  While this may not exactly be a silent film screening, its a fund raising event for next year’s Slapstick Festival which hosts an excellent and diverse programme of silent films, so it deserves our (and your) support.  Hosted LIVE by Infinite Monkey Cage star and stand up comedian Robin Ince, a glittering array of celebrity friends and supporters of the UK’s biggest annual celebration of silent and classic onscreen comedy come together for one night only to take part in an evening of fun, laughter and music.  Robin will be compèring this unique comedy event with a dream line-up of performers, including Sir Michael Palin, Rob Brydon, Stephen Merchant, Jo Brand, David Mitchell, Harry Hill, Jack Dee, Lucy Porter, Lee Mack, Graeme Garden, Stephen Fry, Jess Robinson, Tony Hawks, Richard Herring and Frankie Boyle! For further details and to tune in, go here

Sunday 20 September

Episode 26 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format is three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment.  This week’s films include Yes, Yes, Nanette (1925) starring James Finlayson, with Lyle Tayo, Oliver Hardy, Jack Gavin, Florence Lee and  Sue “Bugs” O’Neil; Bunny’s Dilemma (1913) starring John Bunny, with Flora Finch, Wally Van and Lillian Walker, and; The Boat (1921) starring Buster Keaton, with Sybil Seely and Eddie Cline.  The event streams at 8pm UK time on You Tube. Further details here.       (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Sunday 13 September

Episode 25 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format is three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment.  This week’s films will be detailed shortly.  The event streams at 8pm UK time on You Tube. Further details here.       (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Monday 31 August

Retroformat Silent Films, live from Los Angeles, presents a fortnightly silent screening. No details available yet on tonight’s screening but it will come with live musical accompaniment .   Watch here  on their You Tube channel (broadcast 7.30 pm US West Coast Time, 3.30am 4 Aug UK time!!).     (NB  This event will  also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Sunday 30 August

Episode 23 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format is three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment.  This week’s films will be detailed shortly.  The event streams at 8pm UK time on You Tube. Further details here.       (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Friday 28 August

California’s UCLA Library present Mothers Of Men (Dir. Willis Robards, US, 1917). Produced by progressive-minded filmmakers before women had the right to vote, Mothers of Men is set in an America after suffrage has been won to tell the story of Clara Madison (Dorothy Davenport), a lawyer who pursues electoral victories from judge to governor, earning herself a raft of enemies along the way. When a muckraking newspaper editor conspires to frame her unwitting husband in a bomb plot, Governor Madison is forced to make the ultimate choice between “head and heart.” Through Madison’s struggles, the film confronts the stereotypes and misogynist attacks that women civic leaders faced at the time, illuminating how they’ve persisted into the present day.  Presented as part of a centennial cinematic celebration of the 19th Amendment (women’s suffrage) this special program also features notable figures from the political and academic worlds in conversation about this history of women’s suffrage and the continuing struggle for universal suffrage throughout the country. The event begins at 4:00pm US Pacific time/Midnight UK time.  Not clear whether the film presentation will have live or recorded musical accompaniment.  Watch the screening and discussion via Eventbrite here  (NB  This looks to be a one-off event with no opportunity to view at a later date.)

Sunday 23 August

Episode 22 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format will be three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment.  Films scheduled for this week include The Simp (1920) starring Lloyd Hamilton, with Marvel Rea and Otto Fries; and The Waiter’s Ball (1916) starring Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle, with Al St John, Corinne Parquet, Kate Price, Robert Maximillan, Joe Bordeaux and Alice Lake, The event streams at 8pm UK time on You Tube. Further details here.       (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Saturday 22 August

The newly revived cinephobe.tv present The Mystic (Dir. Tod Browning, US, 1925) Returning to one of his favorite themes, crooks bilking the gullible nouveau riche, Tod Browning both co-wrote (with Waldemar Young) and directed this evocative silent melodrama starring Conway Tearle as Michael Nash, an American criminal who imports a gang of Hungarian gypsies to gain control over a fortune. The victim, Doris Merrick (Gladys Hulette), is persuaded by fake medium Zara (Aileen Pringle) to hand over her jewels to Nash. But all is not what it seems.  Somewhat of a disappointment in comparison with Browning’s later thriller The Unholy Three (1925), The Mystic benefited from the presence of costume designer Romain de Tirtoff (aka Erté) whose extravagant black-and-white creations were luxuriously modeled by the sophisticated Aileen Pringle. .  The film can be viewed here at 4:30pm UK time.  The film comes with a recorded soundtrack.

Thursday 20 August

Bristol’s Slapstick Festival present this live streamed event in which Infinite Monkey Cage co-presenter, podcaster and stand-up comedian Robin Ince talks to veteran film critic and historian David Robinson, author of the official biography of Charlie Chaplin, about the life, times, work and enduring appeal of the ‘Little Tramp’. Also features an audience Q&A.  This one-off event takes place at 7:30pm UK time.  Participation is by Eventbrite ticket here with a donation towards the next Slapstick Festival.

Wednesday 19 August

The Kennington Bioscope present the ninth of their Live Stream Broadcasts on the KBTV  channel on You Tube at 7:30.  In an impressively high tech format they present silent films introduced by Michelle Facey (@best2vilmabanky) and accompanied live by pianists Cyrus Gabrysh and John Sweeney.   This week they are screening another two films from the Jean Desmet Collection, by kind permission of the Netherlands EYE Filmmuseum. Enjoy a hair-raising ride, plus picturesque scenes of Paris, in the short comedy film, Un Partie de Tandem – A Ride on the Tandem Bike (1909), with a specially pre-recorded accompaniment by Colin Sell. The main feature is an eternal tale of adventure from the pen of 19th Century novelist, Jules Verne, In Search Of The Castaways: The Children Of Captain Grant (1914), an exciting cinematic adaptation produced by the French Éclair company, with film scenario written by Jules’ son, Michael Verne. This cinematic version is “an adventure film in which the children of Captain Grant go in search of their father. Lord Glenarvan and Lady Helena find a letter in which Captain Grant asks for help. Together with the children of Grant and Jacques Pagnanel they go looking. Since the letter is unclear, they have to search the entire thirty-seventh parallel. They experience many adventures in South America, Australia and New Zealand…” Native New Zealander, John Sweeney, was keen to screen this action film, with its varied landscapes, all shot in France, but with some standing in for his homeland, and he will perform a live improvised accompaniment., Check out our review here of a previous episode to get an idea of the format.  You can watch  here .  Or why not subscribe here for future event details delivered straight to your In-Box.    (NB  This event will  also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Monday 17 August

Retroformat Silent Films, live from Los Angeles, presents The Flapper (Dir. Alan Crosland, US, 1920)   High-spirited 16 year old Genevieve ‘Ginger’ King (Olive Thomas) is packed off to boarding school by her wealthy father when she becomes too much for sedate Orange Springs.  And that’s where the fun starts  She falls for an older man, gets involved with some jewel thieves and innocently ends up carrying the loot. The Flapper was scripted by Francis Marion and is credited with popularizing the slang term “flapper” throughout the United States in the 1920s,  Star Olive Thomas was in her mid-twenties when she made the film but managed a credible portrayal of teenager Ginger.  After winning a  “Most Beautiful Girl in New York City” contest in 1914 Thomas became an artist’s model and then a Ziegfeld Girl before moving into pictures.  Married to Jack Pickford, Mary’s younger brother, the two had a turbulent relationship and  just months after the completion of The Flapper while the couple were visiting Paris. she drank poison in still unclear circumstances and died shortly afterwards.   Oh, and look out for Norma Shearer in an early un-credited role as one of Ginger’s school girl friends.      This evening’s films come with live musical accompaniment .   Watch here  on their You Tube channel (broadcast 7.30 pm US West Coast Time, 3.30am 4 Aug UK time!!).     (NB  This event will  also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Sunday 16 August

Bonn’s International Silent Days Film Festival present – Le Moulin Maudit (Dir.Alfred Machin, Bel, 1910)  In this exquisitely coloured short melodrama Dutch girl Johanna loves poor Joachim, but marries the wealthy miller instead. When the miller finds the two lovers together he takes an awful revenge   +   Maudite soit la Guerre (War Is Hell) (Dir,Alfred Machin,Bel, 1914) Made just before the outbreak of The Great War, this is a startling masterpiece of early cinema, The film shows how war destroys love and friendship through the story of two friends obliged to fight each other as pilots in the airforce of their respective (unnamed) countries.  The films will be streamed shortly after their live screening at the festival itself along with a recording of the earlier live musical accompaniment performed by Sabrina Zimmermann (Violin)  and Mark Pogolski (Piano) and will be available to watch for the next 48 hours.  Find out more at here

Saturday 15 August

Bonn’s International Silent Days Film Festival present – Storm Over Asia (Dir. Vsevolod Pudovkin, USSR, 1928) A classic of Soviet revolutionary film, Storm Over Asia opens with an ethnographic study of the everyday life of the Mongols before moving on to present a picture of their struggle against British colonial rule.  The film will be streamed shortly after its live screening at the festival itself along with a recording of the earlier live musical accompaniment performed by Stephen Horne (Piano, Flute, Accordion) and will be available to watch for the next 48 hours.  Find out more at here

Friday 14 August

Bonn’s International Silent Days Film Festival present– Phantom of the Moulin Rouge (aka Le fantôme du Moulin Rouge)(Dir Rene Clair, Fr, 1925)   The Phantom of the Moulin Rouge continues with the same mischievously surreal themes of Clair’s first two short films with the story of a man, frustrated in his romantic ambitions, who becomes the victim for a scientific experiment in which a strange doctor separates the soul of the man from his body.  The film will be streamed shortly after its live screening at the festival itself along with a recording of the earlier live musical accompaniment performed by Elizabeth-Jane Baldry (Harp) and Stephen Horne (Piano, Flute, Accordion) and will be available to watch for the next 48 hours.  Find out more at here

Thursday 13 August

Bonn’s International Silent Days Film Festival present The Student of Prague (Dir. Henrik Galeen, Ger, 1926)  This darkly romantic tale, with echoes of the Faust legend and Poe’s William Wilson, is a superbly crafted remake of Stellan Rye’s supernatural chiller of 1913. An impoverished student (Conrad Veidt) sells his mirror reflection to a moneylender and is subsequently stalked by a Doppelgänger over whom he has no control. Veidt’s virtuosic portrayal of a split personality plumbs terrifying depths.  The film will be streamed shortly after its live screening at the festival itself along with a recording of the earlier live musical accompaniment performed by Stephen Horne (Piano, Flute, Accordion) and will be available to watch for the next 48 hours.  Find out more at here

Wednesday 12 August

The Cinema Arts Centre in Huntington NY will be screening Lady Windemere’s Fan (Dir. Ernst Lubitsch, US, 1925) Based on the play by Oscar Wilde and a classic of the silent era, Lady Windermere’s Fan has come to define director Ernst Lubitsch’s sublime touch – suave direction, sparkling wit, meticulous performances, and precise mise-en-scene in which every glance, gesture, and object subtly conveys meaning. Concerning the  hypocrisy of Victorian morals, particularly the institution of marriage, Lady Windermere’s Fan begins as Mrs. Erlynne returns from foreign travels to blackmail her daughter’s husband into introducing her into polite society so she can snag a lord she’s determined to marry. The plan backfires when her daughter, who does not know of her existence, mistakes the scheming older woman for a rival. Already a critically acclaimed director in Germany, Lubitsch’s success continued in the US with classic films like The Shop Around the Corner, To Be or Not to Be, Ninotchka, Trouble in Paradise, Design for Living, and he is credited with bringing to American cinema all the distinctive aspects of European comedy, replete with what one critic would call “its charm, decadence, and frivolity.” With live on-line piano accompaniment from Ben Model.  The event is free (or Pay-What-You-Can) and streams at 7pm EST (Midnight UK time) but you need to register to take part.  More details  here

Bonn’s International Silent Days Film Festival present  Duck Soup (Dir. Fred Guoil, US, 1927)  Playing together in this film although not yet the famous duo, Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy are vagrants who wreak havoc in an abandoned villa +  College (Dir. James W Horne/ Buster Keaton, US, 1927) which sees Buster Keaton having to master sporting activities and competitions in order to win his beloved. College is one of the best sports parodies in film history, in whose breathtaking finale Keaton did without doubles and camera tricks and brilliantly demonstrated his athletic skills.  The films will be streamed shortly after their live screening at the festival itself along with a recording of the earlier live musical accompaniment performed by Neil Brand (Piano)  and will be available to watch for the next 48 hours.  Find out more at here

Tuesday 11 August

Bonn’s International Silent Days Film Festival present Peg o’ the Mounted (Dir. Alfred J Goulding, US, 1924)  When an injured and exhausted Mountie collapses outside her cabin, it falls to Baby Peggy to take up the challenge and track down the illegal moonshiners  +  Wolf Lowery (Dir. William S Hart, US, 1917)  The only surviving example of Hart’s directorial work, Wolf Lowery sees him as the owner of the Bar Z Ranch. He gets worked up when he finds a squatter on his land, but after he discovers that the settler is a woman, Margery Wilson, his attitude changes. The films will be streamed shortly after their live screening at the festival itself along with a recording of the earlier live musical accompaniment performed by Neil Brand (Piano) and Günter A. Buchwald (Viola, Violin) and will be available to watch for the next 48 hours.  Find out more at here

Monday 10 August

Bonn’s International Silent Days Film Festival present Mädchen am Kreuz (Girl On THe Cross)  (Dir. Luise and Jakob Fleck, Ger, 1929) Young student Mary spends her vacation starting with boat trips, visits to her wealthy groom, and gardening. In fast-paced, rhythmic cuts, Louise and Jakob Fleck draw their audience into a light-hearted, urban comedy of love that transforms itself into a melodrama about sexual violence, shame and perpetrator-victim reversal with a single scene.  The film will be streamed shortly after its live screening at the festival itself along with a recording of the earlier live musical accompaniment performed by Richard Siedhoff (Piano) and will be available to watch for the next 48 hours.  Find out more at here

Sunday 9 August

The newly revived cinephobe.tv present The Blackbird (Dir. Tod Browning, US, 1926) In this, one of the numerous Tod Browning/Lon Chaney collaborations, Chaney plays The Blackbird, a master criminal who stages daring robberies in London’s Limehouse district, and between crimes disguises himself as The Bishop, a kindly, crippled keeper of a rescue mission. The Blackbird falls for Fifi Lorraine (Renee Adoree), a singer in the music hall.  But he has a rival for Fifi’s attentions in the shape of West End Bertie, an aristocratic crook who also frequents the music hall.  And there is certainly no love lost between these two rivals for Fifi’s affections.  This is a typical slice of Browning grand guignol with Chaney again excelling in the ‘making himself grotesque’ stakes.  The film was a financial success albeit the least profitable of Chaney’s films for MGM.  It can be viewed here at 10.45am UK time.  The film comes with a recorded soundtrack.

Episode 21 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format will be three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment.  Films being screened tonight are  Her First Kiss (1919) starring Ethel Teare and Slim Summerville, with Laura La Varnie, Harry Booker, Bobby Dunn, Marvel Rae, Gus Pixley and Roscoe “Tiny” Ward; together with probably by favourite Buster Keaton short, The Goat (1921) also starring Virginia Fox, Joe Roberts, Kitty Bradbury, Garry O’Dell, Eddie Cline and Mal St. Clair. The event streams at 8pm UK time on You Tube. Further details here.       (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Bonn’s International Silent Days Film Festival present Mälarpirater (Dir. Gustaf Molander, Swe, 1928) Gustaf Molander, who had worked closely with Sjostrom and Stiller, began to direct films and quickly showed that he was something more than an apt pupil. His Malarpirater  was a fresh and spontaneous piece about three boys who steal a boat and sail away for a summer adventure on Lake Mälaren. Based on Sigfrid Siwertz’s novel it is well acted by Einar Hansson and Inga Tidblad.  The film will be streamed shortly after its live screening at the festival itself along with a recording of the earlier live musical accompaniment performed by Günter A. Buchwald (Piano, Viola, Violin) and will be available to watch for the next 48 hours.  Find out more at here

Saturday 8 August

Bonn’s International Silent Days Film Festival present L’Argent (Dir Marcel L’Herbier, Fr, 1928).  L’Herbier’s classic is a  spectacular large-scale production that describes the world of financial markets and speculators, focusing on two rival bankers, both of whom have a love affair with the beautiful Baroness Sandorf, played of course by the wonderful Brigitte Helm.  The film will be streamed shortly after its live screening at the festival itself along with a recording of the earlier live musical accompaniment performed by Günter A.Buchwald (Piano) and Wolfgang Fernow (Kontrabass) and will be available to watch for the next 48 hours.  Find out more at here

Friday 7 August

Bonn’s International Silent Days Film Festival present Looping the Loop (German: Die Todesschleife) (Dir.Arthur Robison, Ger, 1928)   Circus and variety films were a popular genre in the silent film era. This late silent era thriller starring Robert Reinert (who died before it was completed) tells the story of a clown who, while disguising his identity, woos a young artist.  The film will be streamed shortly after its live screening at the festival itself along with a recording of the earlier live musical accompaniment performed by Richard Siedhoff (Piano) and Mykyta Sierov (Oboe) and will be available to watch for the next 48 hours.  Find out more at here

Thursday 6 August

It might not be ‘On-Line’, but given the paucity of silent films on UK terrestrial TV it would be a shame not to give a shout out to The Polite Burglar (Dir. Sadie Andrews, UK, 1929)  being screened today on Talking Pictures TV at 11.3Oam.  Ostensibly a comedy about a woman, her husband and a burglar, the film was specifically produced for a meeting of the London Amateur Cinematographers’ Association on 27 March 1929. The film was the basis of a competition for the club members who were invited to record the mistakes incorporated into the film. The film is part of the Women Amateur Filmmakers Collection at the East Anglian Film Archive.  The film is accompanied by musician and composer Laura Rossi

Bonn’s International Silent Days Film Festival present East And West (Dir.Sidney M. Goldin, Au, 1923).  One of the few surviving examples of Yiddish cinema, East And West is also a delightful comedy detailing the exploits of the daughter of a rich Jewish American businessman who travels to the wedding of her demure cousin who lives in a traditional Polish shtetl.  The film will be streamed shortly after its live screening at the festival itself along with a recording of the earlier live musical accompaniment performed by Richard Siedhoff (Piano) and Mykyta Sierov (Oboe) and will be available to watch for the next 48 hours.  Find out more at here

Wednesday 5 August

The Kennington Bioscope present the eighth of their Live Stream Broadcasts on the KBTV  channel on You Tube at 7:30.  In an impressively high tech format they present silent films introduced by Michelle Facey (@best2vilmabanky) and accompanied live by pianists Cyrus Gabrysh and John Sweeney.   This week they are screening another selection of  silent shorts  from the collection of the EYE Filmmuseum in the Netherlands and  will be taking a vicarious voyage, traveling with first-class films, across the Mediterranean, seen through the lens of a selection of European travelogues, plus a Vitagraph drama, The Lonely Princess (USA 1913), directed by and starring Maurice Costello and Clara Kimball Young, shot on location in Venice and an Italian comedy, Robinet in Vacanza (IT 1912),  which sees Robinet, played by the multi-pseudonymous Marcel Perez, attempting to take his vacation.  And as if that wasn’t enough,  regular pianists Cyrus and John will also be joined by Lillian Henley and Costas Fotopoulos, Check out our review here of a previous episode to get an idea of the format.  You can watch  here .  Or why not subscribe here for future event details delivered straight to your In-Box.    (NB  This event will  also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Tuesday 4 August

It might not be ‘On-Line‘, but given the paucity of silent films on UK terrestrial TV it would be a shame not to give a shout out to Sally Sallies Forth (Dir. Frances Lascot, UK, 1928) being screened today on Talking Pictures TV at 11.20am.  This was the first ‘all-woman’ film production in the UK and tells of how a disgruntled young woman accidentally becomes a maid for the day at a garden tea party. The film is part of the Women Amateur Filmmakers Collection at the East Anglian Film Archive.  The film is accompanied by musician and composer Laura Rossi

Monday 3 August

Retroformat Silent Films, live from Los Angeles, presents  a double bill of comedy shorts from the great Charley Chase.  First up is What Price Goofy (Dir. Leo McCarey, US, 1925) in which Chase plays a Mr Jamison, a man with a very jealous wife.  But what will the wife do when she realises that her husband is entertaining a visiting professor who turns out to be an attractive woman.  This is followed by Bad Boy (Dir. Leo McCarey, US, 1925) with Charley playing Jimmy Jump, a man trying to please bth of his parents.  But one wants ‘manliness’ and the other wants ‘ sensitivity’.  And Jimmy just wants to marry his girlfriend.   This evening’s films come with live musical accompaniment .   Watch here  on their You Tube channel (broadcast 7.30 pm US West Coast Time, 3.30am 4 Aug UK time!!).     (NB  This event will  also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Sunday 2 August

It might not strictly be a ‘live’ On Line event but this is definitely one worth catching up with.  Cinephobe.tv was a free to use film streaming channel noted for regularly screening more obscure and less commercial movies but which for some reason went off line a couple of months ago.  However, its back up and running this weekend and one of its first presentations is The Chronicles of the Grey House (Dir Arthur von Gerlach, Ger, 1925) (97mins) an eerie, fantastical old dark house melodrama, focusing on a deadly inheritance dispute between two brothers with strikingly different wives. Pictorially ravishing – even by Weimar standards – this period drama evokes the feudal past in all its uncompromising strangeness. It’s renowned for its Rembrandt-inspired lighting, magnificent production design and wild, poetic landscapes shot on location.  Find out more at  wikipedia.org.  The film screens at 4pm UK time here.  But not only are they showing the film, it is also preceded by an introduction from the Kennington Bioscope‘s own highly knowledgeable cinephile Michelle Facey (@best2vilmabanky).  So its definitely one ‘not-to-be-missed’.

Episode 20 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format will be three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment.  This evenings films are;  Pep  Up (1929) – starring Cliff Bowes, with Adrienne Dore, Marshall Ruth, Billy Dale and Emily Gerdes; Love’s Young Scream (1928) – starring Jack Duffy, with Anne Cornwall, Jimmie Harrison, William Blaisdell, Glen Cavender, James Donnelly and Billy Engle; and, Fluttering Hearts (1927) -starring Charley Chase, with Martha Sleeper, Oliver Hardy, William Burress, Eugene Pallette and Charlie Hall.  The event streams at 8pm UK time on You Tube. Further details here.       (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Sunday 26 July

Hollywood Heritage Museum in California presents The Deadlier Sex (Dir. Robert Thornby, US,  1920) starring Blanche Sweet, Mahlon Hamilton and in his first featured role, Boris Karloff. This is a board-room ‘Battle of the Sexes’ between the daughter of a railroad magnate who kidnaps her business rival – taking him to the wilderness to save her father’s company and show him that money can’t buy everything.  The film may be little known and was described by Sweet herself as one of several “what I knew I shouldn’t do.” But although it was never a critical or popular success Sweet got good reviews for her performance, typical of much of her work in that she doesn’t play a shrinking violet or damsel in distress but rather a woman of action and determination.   With live musical accompaniment by Michael D Mortilla.  Screening on Vimeo at 10am Pacific Coast Time (6pm UK time).  Details here.  (NB  This is a ‘one-off’ screening, not available to view on ‘catch-up’)

Episode 19 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format will be three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment.  This evenings films are;  The Hole In The Wall (1919) – starring Jane Bernoudy, with Bobby Vernon, Fred Ardath, Eddie Boland, Babe Nathan and Steve Murphy; At Coney Island (1912) – starring Mabel Normand, with Mack Sennett, Ford Sterling, Gus Pixley and Kenneth Casey: A Little Hero (1913) – starring Mabel Normand; and, Distilled Love (1920) – starring Alice Howell, with Oliver Hardy, Dick Smith, Eunice Murdock, Eva McKenzie, Fay McKenzie and Billy Bevan.   The event streams at 8pm UK time on You Tube. Further details here.       (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Toronto‘s Silent Revue present Peter Pan (Dir. Herbert Brenon, US, 1924)  This was the first cinematic outing for  J M Barrie’s famous story of the magical boy who refuses to grow up.  If you only know the story from the 1953 Disney version you’re in for a surprise as this is a lot darker telling.   Betty Bronson was personally selected by Barrie to play Peter Pan and also making her screen debut was Mary Brian as Wendy.  A young Anna May Wong makes a fleeting appearance while perennial screen villain Sam Torrence makes an admirable Captain Hook.   Peter Pan is rightfully regarded as one of the silent era’s crowning achievements. with Brenon’s pioneering adaptation fully realising the visual splendor of Barrie’s fantasy in this sumptuous and grand scale production. The film is accompanied by a recorded score by Tania Gill composed specifically for this event.  The film is being screened on Vimeo at 4pm Toronto time (9pm in the UK) with a requirement to register in advance (and hopefully make a donation) here   (NB  Its not clear whether this film will remain available on ‘catch up’ to view later.)

Wednesday 22 July

The Kennington Bioscope present the seventh of their Live Stream Broadcasts on the KBTV  channel on You Tube at 7:30.  In an impressively high tech format they present silent films introduced by Michelle Facey (@best2vilmabanky) and accompanied live by pianists including Cyrus Gabrysh and John Sweeney.   This week they have teamed up with the British Film Institute to screen the silent film version of Harold Brighouse’s classic play Hobson’s Choice (Dir. Percy Nash, UK, 1920).  Not as well known as the 1953 version directed by David Lean and starring Charles Laughton, this 1920 version is a faithful rendition of the play, albeit largely studio bound, with some nice performances from a largely unknown cast..  You can find out loads more about the film from South West Silents‘ hugely knowledgeable Mark Fuller here.  As well as this main feature there will also be a full supporting programme (details TBC).  Check out our review here of a previous episode to get an idea of the format.  You can watch  here .  Or why not subscribe here for future event details delivered straight to your In-Box.    (NB  This event will  also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Tuesday 21 July

Sands Films Cinema Club in Rotherhithe present Coeur Fidele (Dir. Jean Epstein, Fr, 1923). An early example of director Epstein’s remarkable talent, Coeur Fidele is on one level a simple and rather slight melodrama of love and jealousy.  But at another level it is a unforgettable kaleidoscope of radical cinematic technique, utilising  rhythmic editing, overlays, close-ups, point-of-view shots and montage scenes as well as dramatic lighting and lens distortion effects to enhance the narrative. Epstein had already established himself as an influential film theorist with the publication of several books but with Coeur Fidele, his third film, he was now putting those ideas into practice and in the process helping to lay the foundations of the French school of 1930’s cinema.  Subsequent Epstein silent films would include Lion of the Mongols (1924), The Fall of the House of Usher (1928) and Finis Terrae (1929).  The screening tonight will be preceded by a short presentation on the film and the work of Jean Epstein. It will be screened with a recorded score.  The film will screen at 8pm (UK) and you can access it here(NB  This event will  also remain available on Facebook/Vimeo to watch later.)

Monday 20 July

Retroformat Silent Films, live from Los Angeles, presents Back To God’s Country (Dir. Ernest Shipman, US, 1920).  Written, produced and starring Nell Shipman (who probably also co-directed) the film follows the exploits of a young wife trapped on an ice-bound ship with its murderous captain, who must escape in order to save her severely wounded husband. Nell Shipman is, today, an almost forgotten female pioneer of silent film but in many ways she was decades ahead of her time.  A feminist, an environmentalist and a campaigner for animal rights long before such terms had ever been coined, she was a successful actress, screen-writer, animal trainer, producer and director and also performed her own stunts (which proved almost fatal on more than one occasion).  Her films were distinguished for their portrayal of women in brave, strong-willed, adventurous roles,  while her passion for outdoor location shooting in the wildest of settings and conditions gave her films a rugged and realistic quality often lacking in other Hollywood productions of the time and Back To God’s Country is no exception.    —  Plus —  The Escape on the Fast Freight (Dir. Paul Hurst, US, 1915), episode 13 from the action film serial The Hazards of Helen, featuring Helen Holmes who not only starred as the quick thinking, independent and adventurous heroine, but also did all of her own stunts. The serial eventually ran to 119 episodes from 1914 to 1917 with Holmes starring in the first 48.   This evening’s films come with live musical accompaniment .   Watch here  on their You Tube channel (broadcast 7.30 pm US West Coast Time).     (NB  This event will  also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Sunday 19 July

Episode 18 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format will be three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment. Tonight’s films are;  The Water Plug (1920) – starring Billy Franey, with Robert McKenzie, Silas Wilcox and George Jeske; Robinet’s White Suit (L’ABITO BIANCO DI ROBINET, 1911) – starring Marcel Perez, with Ernesto Vasar; and, Number Please? (1920) – starring Harold Lloyd, with Mildred Davis, Roy Brooks, Noah Young and Sunshine Sammy Morrison The event streams at 20:00 UK time on You Tube. Further details here.       (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Hollywood Heritage Museum in California presents The Deadlier Sex (Dir. Robert Thornby, US,  1920) starring Blanche Sweet, Mahlon Hamilton and in his first featured role, Boris Karloff. This is a board-room ‘Battle of the Sexes’ between the daughter of a railroad magnate who kidnaps her business rival – taking him to the wilderness to save her father’s company and show him that money can’t buy everything.  The film may be little known and was described by Sweet herself as one of several “what I knew I shouldn’t do.” But although it was never a critical or popular success Sweet got good reviews for her performance, typical of much of her work in that she doesn’t play a shrinking violet or damsel in distress but rather a woman of action and determination.   With live musical accompaniment by Michael D Mortilla.  Screening on Vimeo at 6pm Pacific Coast Time (2am, 20 July UK time).  Details here.  (NB  Apart from a repeat screening on 26 July, this is a ‘one-off’ event, not available to view on ‘catch-up’)

Saturday 18 July

The Jewish Film Institute and San Francisco Silent Film Festival jointly present Broken Barriers (Dir. Charles Davenport, US, 1919) Long-thought lost but rediscovered and newly restored by The National Center for Jewish Film, the film is back on the screen after 100 years! Originally released as Khavah but later retitled Broken Barriers, this is the first American screen adaptation of the work of Sholem Aleichem (Tevye, Fiddler on the Roof, etc). Born in Russia in 1859, Yiddish author Sholem Rabinovich, who wrote under the pen name of Sholem Aleichem, was the most read and revered Jewish writer of his time. This film focuses not on Tevye the milkman, but on his daughter Khavah, who falls in love with the gentile boy Fedka, sending reverberations through her family and community. The film’s substantive depiction of Jewish life is a rarity even amongst the precious few surviving early American films with Jewish content.   With live musical accompaniment featuring a brand new commissioned score by renowned musician Sascha Jacobsen.  Find out more  here.  This is a pay-to-view screening ($15) for which you need to register.  (NB  It is a one-off screening and will not be available to view on ‘catch-up’. )

Wednesday 15 July

The Cinema Arts Centre in Huntington NY will be screening The Kid (Dir. Charles Chaplin, US, 1921) Chaplin’s first full-length feature about a little tramp who discovers a small orphan and brings him up but is left desolate when the orphanage reclaims him. Beneath the comedy, there are definitely some more serious thematic elements at work and and the film is noted for its pathos. In that regard, the opening inter-title proves to be true: “A picture with a smile — and perhaps, a tear.”Chaplin directed, produced and starred in the film.  Find out more at wikipedia.org .  With live on-line piano accompaniment from Ben Model.  The event is free (or Pay-What-You-Can) and streams at 7pm EST (Midnight UK time) but you need to register to take part.  More details here

Sunday 12 July

Episode 17 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format will be three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment.  This week’s screenings include Oranges And Lemons (1923) – starring Stan Laurel, with Katherine Grant, Eddie Baker, George Rowe, Martin Wolfkeil, Owen Evans, Sammy Brooks and Fay Wray ;  The Bathtub Bandit (1917) – starring Ham & Bud (Lloyd Hamilton & Bud Duncan), with Robert N. Bradbury, Juanita Sponsler, John Steppling; and,  The Rink (1916) – starring Charlie Chaplin, with Edna Purviance, Eric Campbell, James T. Kelly, Henry Bergman, Frank J. Coleman, Albert Austin, John Rand, Charlotte Mineau, Leota Bryan and Lloyd Bacon.   The event streams at 20:00 UK time on You Tube. Further details here.       (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Wednesday 8 July

The Kennington Bioscope present the sixth of their Live Stream Broadcasts on the KBTV  channel on You Tube at 7:30.  In an impressively high tech format they present silent films introduced by Michelle Facey (@best2vilmabanky) and accompanied live by pianists Cyrus Gabrysh, Colin Sell and John Sweeney.   This week they are screening four silent shorts on the subject of filmmaking and filmgoing from the EYE Filmmuseum, Une promenade dans Los Angeles (1912), a scenic look around LA; Arthème Opérateur (1913), a French short featuring projection booth shenanigans; Photoplay Magazine Screen Supplement (1919), the first episode of a series of reportages about movie stars and film studios. We’ll meet Douglas Fairbanks, Mary Miles Minter, John Emerson and Anita Loos, among others; and The Picture Idol (1912). Clara Kimball Young and Maurice Costello star in this Vitagraph light comedy about a girl in love with a movie star, who follows him everywhere.  And if that wasn’t enough, they are also screening their first Pathescope 9.5mm film online, a print of Four Square Steve (1926), one of the Universal Mustang westerns, with an early role for Fay Wray, from the collection of Christopher Bird. Check out our review here of a previous episode to get an idea of the format.  You can watch  here .  Or why not subscribe here for future event details delivered straight to your In-Box.    (NB  This event will  also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Monday 6 July

Retroformat Silent Films, live from Los Angeles, presents  Body And Soul (Dir.  Oscar Micheaux, US, 1925). Directed by the legendary African American filmmaker Oscar Micheaux, the film is a direct critique of the power of the cloth starring Paul Robeson, making his film debut at the age of 27.  One of a number of ‘race’ films produced for America’s segregated southern audiences, Body and Soul features an all-black cast, led by Robeson in a twin role as both a scheming convict posing as a reverend, attempting to swindle his congregation of their offerings, and his long-lost twin brother. The themes of morality and civility that run through the film are typical tropes of the race film, but Micheaux’s film has a potent force enhanced by Robeson’s undoubted star charisma.    The film comes with live musical accompaniment by Cliff Retallick   Additionally, veteran studio executive, independent producer, manager and educator Kevin Jones will discuss Oscar Micheaux’s landmark film.  Watch here on their You Tube channel (broadcast time 7.30 pm US West Coast Time).     (NB  This event will  also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Sunday 5 July

Episode 16 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format will be three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment. This week’s films are:   SHINE ‘EM UP (1922) – starring Paul Parrott, with Eddie Baker, Jobyna Ralston;  A THRILLING ROMANCE (1926) – starring Wanda Wiley, with Earl McCarthy, Joe Bonner, Al Hallett; and, THE SCARECROW (1920) – starring Buster Keaton, with Joe Roberts, Sybil Seely, Luke, Joe Keaton, Eddie Cline. The event streams at 20:00 UK time on You Tube. Further details here.       (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Saturday 4 July

We may all have missed out on this year’s Hippodrome Silent Film Festival but the good folk at HippFest are doing their best to make up for this with their first live on-line event.  They will be screening the classic 1920 version of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde starring John Barrymore and with an early but memorable performance from Nita Naldi.  Providing the live piano accompaniment will be Neil Brand while the film will be introduced by @silentlondon‘s Pamela Hutchinson.  Find out more on Facebook here

Sunday 28 June

Episode 15 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format will be three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment.  No film details are yet available.   The event streams at 20:00 UK time on You Tube. Further details here.       (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Toronto’s Silent Revue present Robert Wiene’s visually astounding The Cabinet Of Dr Caligari, which celebrates its centenary this year! One of most highly recognized of German Expressionist film (and silent film in general), Calagari has inspired over a century of film-making and visual culture, including the films of Tim Burton, and even the Marvel Comics Universe. The film screens with a special German Expressionist surprise short. With live musical accompaniment from Marilyn Lerner.  Screening at 9pm Toronto time (1am 29th June UK time!!) This event is free (although donations are encouraged) and will be presented via a Vimeo link to those who register through the Eventbrite link here

Friday  26  June

The Netherlands Silent film Festival present their third silent film with live accompaniment event.  Pianist Daan van den Hurk  will once again accompany the silent comedy shorts live!  We are also promised a few other surprises, but you have to tune in to find out what they are.  The event kicks off at 7pm UK time.  Further details here.  (NB  And remember, this is a one-time event, you can only watch live, there is no option to catch it later.)

Thursday 25 June

CINEMATEK Belgium will be hosting another live event this afternoon featuring four complete films and one extract from the great French silent comedian Max Linder.  The films include Victime du quinquina (Max Takes a Tonic, 1911), Le rendez-vous (Max and the Rendezvous, 1913),  Amoureux de la teinturière (Of The Deepest Dye, 19212) and Max émule de Tartarin (Wanted: A Bearskin, 1912).  The extract comes from Linder’s last American film, The Three Must-Get-Theres (1922) his pastiche of Alexandre Dumas’ famous story which also starred regular Harold Lloyd leading lady Jobyna Ralston.  The event comes with live piano accompaniment and is scheduled for 14:00hrs UK time on Facebook here

Wednesday 24 June

The Kennington Bioscope present the fifth of their Live Stream Broadcasts on the KBTV  channel on You Tube at 7:30.  In an impressively high tech format they present silent films introduced by Michelle Facey (@best2vilmabanky) and accompanied live by pianists Cyrus Gabrysh, Costas Fotopoulos and John Sweeney.   This week the KenBio guys and gals have really upped their game as they will be featuring not just two shorts (Robinet’s White Suit (1911) with live accompaniment by Cyrus plus Il Pescara (1912) with pre-record accompaniment by Costas) but they are also hosting their first feature length film, Kidnapped (1917) with live piano accompaniment by John.   And as if that wasn’t enough, the film will be introduced by @MoviesSilently‘s Fritzi Kramer.  Check out our review here of a previous episode to get an idea of the format.  You can watch  here .  Or why not subscribe here for future event details delivered straight to your In-Box.    (NB  This event will  also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Monday 22 June

Bumping Into Broadway (Dir. Hal Roach, US, 1919) + High And Dizzy (Dir. Hal Roach, US, 1920) (23/26 mins) Two shorts starring Harold Lloyd.  In the first he is an impoverished, unpublished playwright struggling to pay the rent, particularly when he gives all his remaining cash to the  equally hard up actress (Bebe Daniels) he idolises so she can pay her own rent. In the second film,  Lloyd is a doctor fresh out of medical school who has opened his own practice but as yet with no patients.  His first customer is a young lady  (Mildred Davis, and soon to become Mrs Harold Lloyd) prone to sleepwalking and, this being a Harold Lloyd film, it can only end with doctor and patient on the ledge of a tall building.   Presented by Retroformat Silent Films, live from Los Angeles, the film not only comes with live musical accompaniment but also features a live discussion with Suzanne Lloyd, Harold’s grand-daughter, talking about his life and work.  Watch here on their You Tube channel (broadcast time TBC).     (NB  This event will  also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Sunday 21 June

Episode 14 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format will be three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment.  No film details are yet available.   The event streams at 20:00 UK time on You Tube. Further details here.       (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Thursday 18 June

Like most other festivals this year, Mostly Lost 2020 has fallen victim to Covid-19.  The festival brings together silent film enthusiasts in an effort to identify recently rediscovered films and film snippets.  However, as a small bonus during lock-down, the Library of Congress has joined with CINEMATEK Brussels to host a virtual screening of films that have played during past “Mostly Lost” events yet still remain unidentified. STILL MOSTLY LOST will be streamed on Thursday June 18, 2020 via Facebook with live musical accompaniment from Stephane Orlando. You too can help to identify those films… Streams at 19:00 in Europe, 18:00 in UK and 13:00 on US East Coast.  Follow the action  here  (NB   Not confirmed but suspect that this is a one-off event with no opportunity to catch up later.)

Steamboat Bill Jr   (Dir. Buster Keaton/Charles Reisner, US, 1928)  (71  mins) A crusty river boat captain hopes that his long departed son’s return will help him compete with an aggressive business rival.  Unfortunately, William Canfield Jnr (Buster Keaton) is an effete college boy.  Worse still, he has fallen for the business rival’s daughter (Marion Byron).     Featuring some of Buster’s finest and most dangerous stunts, it’s a health and safety nightmare maybe but it’s entertainment that will live forever.  The final storm sequence is still as breathtaking today as it was on first release. Not a commercial success at the time, this is now rightly regarded as a Keaton classic. Find out more at Wikipedia.   Presented by the Cinema Arts Centre, Huntington, NY, with live piano accompaniment by Ben Model.  You need to register here to take part.

Sunday 14 June

Episode 13 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format will be three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment.  Films this week consist of In And Out (1921) – starring Monty Banks, with Juanita Hansen, William Blaisdell and Cliff Bowes; Grief (1921) – starring Jimmie Adams with Charles Reisner, Albert Austin, Frankie Lee, Dinky Dean Reisner and Max Asher; and the brilliant Mighty Like A Moose (1926) – starring Charley Chase, with Vivien Oakland, Anne Howe and Charles Clary.  The event streams at 20:00 UK time on You Tube. Further details here.  (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Wednesday 10 June

The Kennington Bioscope present the fourth of their Live Stream Broadcasts on the KBTV  channel on You Tube at 7;30.  In an impressively high tech format they present silent films introduced by Michelle Facey (@best2vilmabanky) and accompanied live by regular pianists Cyrus Gabrysh and John Sweeney plus tonight a debut from Costas Fotopoulos.  This week’s films, again supplied by Amsterdam’s Eye Museum, include: The Lie (1915) – a tale of jealousy and deceit in a small fishing community;  Cutey Plays Detective (1913) – a comedy in which a young man uses his amateur thespian experience to get the dirt on a love rival., and: The Girl Detective – The Mystery of the Tea Dansant. (1915) – a standalone installment of a series starring Ruth Roland as a “society girl” working as a special investigator with the police. Check out our review here of a previous episode to get an idea of the format.  The event kicks off at 7:30 UK time.  You can watch  here .  Or why not subscribe here for future event details delivered straight to your In-Box.    (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Sunday 7 June

Episode 12 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa.  The usual format will be three silent comedies introduced by Steve and with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment.  Tonight’s films include;  All Wet (1924) – starring Charley Chase, with Helen Gilmore, William Gillespie, Jack Gavin, Martin “Tonnage” Wolfkeil; Le Singe de Petronille (Pétronille and her Monkey, 1913) – starring Sarah Duhamel, and;  Matchmaking Mamma (1929) – starring Carole Lombard. The event streams at 20:00 UK time on You Tube. Further details here.  (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Thursday 4 June

The Epic of Everest (Dir. J B L Noel, UK, 1924) (85mins)  The third attempt to climb Everest culminated in the deaths of two of the finest climbers of their generation, George Mallory and Andrew Irvine, and sparked an on-going debate over whether or not they did indeed reach the summit.  Filming in brutally harsh conditions with a hand-cranked camera, Captain John Noel captured images of breathtaking beauty and considerable historic significance. The film is also among the earliest filmed records of life in Tibet. But what resonates so deeply is Noel’s ability to frame the vulnerability, isolation and courage of people persevering in one of the world’s harshest landscapes.  Find out more at silentlondon.co.uk  Presented as part of the We Are One: Global Film Festival.  Details here.  Screens at 10:00 UK time. (NB. Looks like this is a ‘one time’ event with no opportunity to catch up later)

Tuesday 2 June

Shiraz; A Romance Of India (Dir. Franz Osten, 1928) (97mins) Based on a play by Indian author Niranjan Pal, Shiraz tells the fictionalised love story of the 17th-century princess who inspired the construction of the Taj Mahal.  It was directed by Germany’s Franz Osten, one of at least 17 films he made in India between 1925 and 1939, best known of which are The Light of Asia (1925) and A Throw of Dice (1929).  Shot entirely on location in India with an all-Indian cast, it features lavish costumes and gorgeous settings – all the more impressive in this restoration by the BFI National Archive with specially commisioned score by Anoushka Shankar. The film was the brainchild of producer Himansu Rai, who also stars as humble potter Shiraz, who follows his childhood sweetheart (Enakshi Rama Rau) when she’s sold by slave traders to the future emperor (Charu Roy).  Find out more at silentfilm.org  Presented as part of the We Are One: Global Film Festival.  Details here .  Screens at 17:15 UK time.  (NB. Looks like this is a ‘one time’ event with no opportunity to catch up later)

Sunday 31 May

Organ virtuoso Donald McKenzie will be providing live accompaniment to a screening of Harold Lloyd classic Speedy (1928) on the mighty Willis Organ at London’s Alexandra Palace. Speedy was Lloyd’s final silent film and sees him reprise his ‘glasses character’ as a baseball-obsessed New Yorker who is determined to save the city’s last horse-drawn streetcar, motivated in no small part by its owner being the grandfather of his love interest. Filled with Lloyd’s trademark rapid-fire visual humour and elaborate set-ups, it’s a fine example of his innovative approach to comedy. Find out more at allmovie.com.  The film will be available on You Tube here at 7pm  (NB   Not clear if this is purely a live event or if you can catch up later.)

Sunday 31 May

Now up to Episode 11 of the Silent Comedy Watch Party, live from New York and hosted by accompanist Ben Model and silent film historian Steve Massa. This week’s three comedies are; THE RIVALS (1923) – starring Slim Summerville & Bobby Dunn, with Esther Ralston;  JUST IMAGINATION (1916) – starring Harry Watson Jr., with Dan Crimmins, H.H. McCollum, Della Connor, Maxfield Moree, and; BUMPING INTO BROADWAY (1919) – starring Harold Lloyd, with Bebe Daniels, Snub Pollard, Helen Gilmore, Noah Young.  The films are introduced by Steve with Ben doing live piano accompaniment from his Upper West Side apartment.   The event streams at 20:00 UK time on You Tube. Further details here.  (NB  This event will be available to watch live but will also remain available on You Tube to watch later.)

Friday  29  May

The Netherlands Silent film Festival present their second silent film with live accompaniment event.  Pianist Daan van den Hurk  will once again accompany five silent comedy shorts live!  We are also promised a few other surprises, but you have to tune in to find out what they are.  The event kicks off at 7pm UK time.  Further details here.  (NB  And remember, this is a one-time event, you can only watch live, there is no option to catch it later.)