1921-1930

W.S. Van Dyke & Robert J. Flaherty – White Shadows in the South Seas (1928)

Unscrupulous trader Sebastian has little trouble cheating the inhabitants of the South Seas paradise and leading the natives to adopt some of the more unfortunate habits of “civilized” men. He has little opposition save Dr. Matthew Lloyd, once an educated and prominent physician but now smothered in the depths of alcoholic deterioration. When Lloyd goes too far in his attempts to thwart the success of the trader’s greedy plots, Sebastian sees to it that the doctor is framed for a crime and sentenced to be cast adrift tied to the wheel of a derelict ship. Read More »

Bobbie Mann & Paul Robello – St Kilda: Britain’s Loneliest Isle (1928)

Touching short documentary about life in the island of St. Kilda, the most isolated of the Hebrides, shot between 1923 and 1928 (only a few years before it was abandoned by his inhabitants in 1930). The evacuation of this island inspired Michael Powell to create The edge of the world in 1937. Read More »

Kenji Mizoguchi – Tokyo koshin-kyoku AKA Tokyo March [Japanese print] (1929)

IMDB:
A classic melodramatic love tragedy addressing social inequality in feudal Japan, depicted in Kenji Mizoguchi’s typical style. The nostalgic scenes of 1920s Tokyo provides a valuable visual experience set against the background of the title song, “Tokyo March.” Read More »

Lionel Barrymore – Madame X (1929)

Plot: Young Raymond Floriot, following in his father Louis Floriot’s professional footsteps, he now France’s attorney general, has just passed the bar exam. Raymond’s first case, appointed to him by the courts, is a murder case. His pitiful and poor Jane Doe client, who refers to herself only as Madame X, admits to killing the scoundrel of a man named Laroque, but won’t disclose why or in turn defend herself in court. Raymond knows nothing of her past, which includes once being a woman of class, married to man of prestige. But that marriage ended because he treated her without love, which resulted in her leaving him for another man, who in turn passed away shortly thereafter. Read More »

Aleksandr Dovzhenko – The Cultural Heritage [Disc 1] (1926 – 1928)

Love’s Berries 1926
The mistress of hairdresser Jean Kovbasyuk throws a baby up to him. Jean decides in any method to be delivered from a “natural” child…Getting a call to the judicial investigator, Kovbasyuk is given up to search a child. A mistress labours for in the court of people’s “justice”. However much it turns out after registration of marriage, that Jean and in actual fact was not the father of child. But lately… Read More »

Aleksandr Dovzhenko – Arsenal (The Cultural Heritage) [Disc 2] (1928)

In Arsenal, Alexander Dovzhenko, perhaps the most radical of the Soviet directors of the silent period, altered the already extended conventions of cinematic structure to a degree greater than had even the innovative Sergei Eisenstein in his bold October. The effect of this tinkering with the more or less accepted proprieties of motion picture construction produced a work that is actually less a film than it is a highly symbolic visual poem. For example, in a more linearly structured piece like October, the metaphors, allusions, and analogies that arise through the construction of the various montages replace rather than comment on essential actions within the film. In Arsenal, however, the symbolism is so purposely esoteric, with seemingly deliberate barriers established to block the viewer’s perception, that the relationship of individual symbols or sequences to the various actions of the film is not immediately clear. Read More »

Aleksandr Dovzhenko – Zemlya – versions of 1930 & 1971 (The Cultural Heritage [Disc 3]) (1930)

Earh (1930) 59 min.
Poetic cinema story about events related to collectivization in Ukraine at the end of 20th years of the last century, about creation of the first of a collective farm communes, about class enmity on a village.
The best film Dovzhenko and one of the best films in history world to the cinema.
A film “Earth” on the World exhibition in Brussels of 1958 was adopted among the twelve best films of all times and people as a result of questioning, conducted Belgian cinematic among 117 film critics andconnoisseurs of the films from 26 countries of the world. During many subsequent years “Earth” was multiple included in the various lists of the best films of the world of XX century. Read More »