George Cukor – A Bill of Divorcement (1932)

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Plot:

After spending fifteen years in an asylum, Hilary Fairfield escapes from the institution after regaining his sanity. He finds that things at home are different than when he left them. His wife has divorced him and is already planning her next marriage, and his daughter has grown up throughout the years and is planning to marry as well. Continue reading

David MacDonald – This Man Is News (1938)

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David Kier, one of the thieves in a sensational jewel robbery and subsequent trial, is set free when the turns King’s Evidence on the other members. Kier refuses to give reporter Simon Drake an interview, as Simon thinks he will probably be killed by other gang members, but Simon makes note of his address. Simon is fired by his city editor, MacGregor, for failing to cover another assignment and the editor says he would not believe Kier’s murder if reported by Simon even if it happened. Simon returns home and is persuaded by his wife Pat to have a drink or two. The tipsy Simon, as a joke, telephones Sim and tells him that Kier has just been murdered, and the excited Sim hangs up before Simon can explain it is just a joke. Continue reading

Gustaf Edgren – Valborgsmassoafton AKA Walpurgis Night (1935)

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Synopsis:

‘Lena Bergstrom works in an office and is unhappily in love with her boss, Johan Borg. She decides to quit. Borg’s wife won’t have any children, and when she becomes pregnant she has an illegal abortion. For some reason, Lena’s father believes that it is Lena who has had an abortion.’
– Mattias Thuresson (IMDb) Continue reading

Abel Gance – Napoléon Bonaparte (1935)

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2011 restoration by La Cinémathèque Française of the re-edited sound version of Abel Gance’s 1927 epic silent film “Napoleon”.

French language only, no english subtitles.

One of the most high-profile casualties of the transition from silent to sound cinema was the French filmmaker Abel Gance. In the silent era, Gance had proven himself to be as great a cineaste as the other legendary pioneers of cinema, D.W. Griffith and Sergei Eisenstein, through a series of groundbreaking masterpieces that included J’accuse! (1919), La Roue (1923) and Napoléon (1927). It was the latter film that was to earn Gance particular acclaim and lasting recognition as one of the architects of cinema art, a five hour visionary epic that presented the early career of Napoléon Bonaparte with a visual artistry and panache that is, to this day, virtually unrivalled. As he struggled to make much of an impact with his sound films, it was inevitable that Gance would return to his earlier great achievement and give it a voice. His sound version of Napoléon would prove to be both a monumental piece of cinema in its own right and a terribly prescient foretaste of the cataclysmic events that would soon overtake Europe in the mid-to-late 1930s. Continue reading