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Review: "The Kid Brother" (1927) Starring Harold Lloyd; Criterion Blu-ray Special Edition

  • CinemaRetro
By Raymond Benson

The Criterion Collection has released its fourth entry in a group of Harold Lloyd silent classics, titles considered to be his very best work—and The Kid Brother could very well be at the top of the heap as the definitive Lloyd feature film. While Safety Last! (1923) contains the iconic sequence of Lloyd ascending a skyscraper and hanging on to the arm of a giant clock, there is much to be said about The Kid Brother’s storytelling, the depth of its characters, and Lloyd’s ability to make us laugh at peril. This time, instead of great heights or speeding cars, the threat comes from villains who want nothing more than to break poor Harold’s neck.

The setting is a rural town at the cusp of the changeover between “western times” and the modern age. Cars exist, but most people are still riding horses. Sheriff
See full article at CinemaRetro »

Cummings' Ten-Year Death Anniversary: From Minor Lloyd Leading Lady to Tony Award Winner (Revised and Expanded)

Constance Cummings: Actress in minor Hollywood movies became major London stage star. Constance Cummings: Actress went from Harold Lloyd and Frank Capra to Noël Coward and Eugene O'Neill Actress Constance Cummings, whose career spanned more than six decades on stage, in films, and on television in both the U.S. and the U.K., died ten years ago on Nov. 23. Unlike other Broadway imports such as Ann Harding, Katharine Hepburn, Miriam Hopkins, and Claudette Colbert, the pretty, elegant Cummings – who could have been turned into a less edgy Constance Bennett had she landed at Rko or Paramount instead of Columbia – never became a Hollywood star. In fact, her most acclaimed work, whether in films or – more frequently – on stage, was almost invariably found in British productions. That's most likely why the name Constance Cummings – despite the DVD availability of several of her best-received performances – is all but forgotten.
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

Full AFI Festival Lineup And Schedule Unveiled

The American Film Institute announced today the films that will screen in the World Cinema, Breakthrough, Midnight, Shorts and Cinema’s Legacy programs at AFI Fest 2015 presented by Audi.

AFI Fest will take place November 5 – 12, 2015, in the heart of Hollywood. Screenings, Galas and events will be held at the historic Tcl Chinese Theatre, the Tcl Chinese 6 Theatres, Dolby Theatre, the Lloyd E. Rigler Theatre at the Egyptian, the El Capitan Theatre and The Hollywood Roosevelt.

World Cinema showcases the most acclaimed international films of the year; Breakthrough highlights true discoveries of the programming process; Midnight selections will grip audiences with terror; and Cinema’s Legacy highlights classic movies and films about cinema. World Cinema and Breakthrough selections are among the films eligible for Audience Awards. Shorts selections are eligible for the Grand Jury Prize, which qualifies the winner for Academy Award®consideration. This year’s Shorts jury features filmmaker Janicza Bravo,
See full article at WeAreMovieGeeks.com »

Criterion Collection: Safety Last! | Blu-ray Review

The timeless comic genius of Harold Lloyd shines through in Fred Newmeyer and Sam Taylor’s 1923 classic Safety Last!, one more silent film championed by the Criterion Collection folks. The indelible bookish, horn-rimmed glasses, straw-hat-wearing comedian show wonderfully how he earned the moniker “the King of Daredevil Comedy”. The “third genius” of the silent era (after Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton), stars in this Horatio Alger-style story of a country boy trying to make good in the big city.

The naive Boy (Harold Lloyd) travels on a train to the big city from the small town Great Bend, promising to send for his Girl (Mildred Davis, Lloyd’s real-life wife) after he has ‘made good’ with fame and fortune. In the opening sequence, he appears behind vertical bars – presumably imprisoning jail bars, but they are actually the train station’s gate. He becomes a low-paid, bookish-looking salesman in the
See full article at IONCINEMA.com »

15 historically significant 'lost' films

Today's generation is surrounded by technology. Rapidly-advancing tools of all sorts are so prevalent in every aspect of our lives that we depend on them, nay, expect them to make our lives easier, more enjoyable, and more interesting. Multi-billion dollar industries such as cinema are in no way immune from the public's desire for bigger and better things. Moviegoers have the options of watching films in a variety of locales, in IMAX or 3D, via regular projection screens or the latest in digital picture. For those who prefer to stay close to home, the options multiply. Satellite TV, cable TV, Redbox, a widespread availability of DVDs, and even the disappearing neighborhood rental store all combine to contain every movie that the discerning film aficionado could ever hope to watch, available at the push of a button or a short drive up the street.

Well... almost every movie. It may seem
See full article at Shadowlocked »

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