Friday, November 28, 2008

More DVD Reviews and Gift Suggestions

From the Holiday Gift Guide:

DOUGLAS FAIRBANKS: A MODERN MUSKETEER It was Douglas Fairbanks who, in a series of films beginning in 1915, created the go-getting American action hero, along with a large portion of our national identity. This collection has restored versions of 11 films, emphasizing his contemporary comedies like Allan Dwan’s “Modern Musketeer” (1917), but also including his first costume swashbuckler, the 1920 “Mark of Zorro.” (Flicker Alley, $89.99, not rated)

GRIFFITH MASTERWORKS 2 Five features by the great form-giver of the early American cinema, D. W. Griffith, including the Museum of Modern Art’s restoration of the (nearly) complete “Way Down East” (1920) and Griffith’s underrated final feature, the brutally realistic “Struggle” (1931). (Kino International, $89.95, not rated)

MURNAU, BORZAGE AND FOX Fox remains the only major studio to demonstrate a commitment to its silent features, and this follow-up to last year’s John Ford collection is a must-have anthology. It contains the two surviving films the great German director F. W. Murnau made for the studio, “Sunrise” (1927) and “City Girl” (1930), as well as 10 silent and early sound features by the incomparable Frank Borzage, the greatest romantic poet of the medium. (Fox Home Video, $239.98, not rated)

Note: These three sets are available in the WTSM Store.

Survey: Deadline approaching fast!

It came up so fast it took me by surprise: The deadline to fill out my survey and be entered into a drawing for a $20 gift certificate is almost here!

The last day to complete the survey is Sunday, midnight, at which time I'll close the survey. On Monday, I'll hold the drawing and notify the lucky winner (and post it on the Blog).

And as promised, I'll have Ed come over and I'll take pictures of him pulling a name out of a hat (to avoid accusations of cheating/favoritism; I'm sensitive to that).

So hurry on over and let me know: What would you like to see at WTSM?

(And a big thank you to those who have taken the few minutes to fill it out. I appreciate your comments/suggestions!)

Thursday, November 27, 2008

"Silent Movies" by Peter Kobel review

The Wall Street Journal Online recently published a "Holiday Gift Guide," with many of the paper's columnist listing bargains and splurges as gift-giving ideas.

Film critic Joe Morgenstern, as one of his bargains, chose Silent Movies by Peter Kobel. His review:

"My first pick for the bargain basement is "Silent Movies," a sumptuous new book whose full title continues, "The Birth of Film and the Triumph of Movie Culture." It retails for $45 but Amazon is currently selling it for $29.70, which is a steal. The author, Peter Kobel, has drawn on the staggeringly rich resources of the Library of Congress, and a forward by Martin Scorsese is followed by an introduction by the distinguished film historian Kevin Brownlow. This isn't a coffee table book, though any coffee table would be lucky to be graced by it. The excellent text manages the trick of being exhaustive without being exhausting, while the photos -- and stills, and posters, and lobby cards -- are enchanting."

It's available in the WTSM Store, and would make a great gift for the film lover on your list!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! I hope you all have a wonderful day.

I also want to thank you all for visiting WTSM, and for your support through and Cafe Press - it's really appreciated.

In the meantime, keep checking back (Sat/Sun) -- I'll be working on the site this weekend, so keep your eyes peeled for some new goodies.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

"The Cameraman" in Canton, OH

My friend Alison sent me a notice that the Canton Palace Theatre (located in beautiful downtown Canton, Ohio) will be showing The Cameraman this Sunday.

Here's the text of the email she forwarded me (with extensive grammatical edits by me):

On Sunday, November 23rd, in celebration of the theatre's 82nd birthday, the Canton Palace Theatre will be showing the classic silent film "The Cameraman" starring Buster Keaton. Accompanying on the Kilgen Theatre Pipe Organ will be nationally known theatre organist Clark Wilson.

This film is considered a masterpiece in comedy film making, used in film schools to demonstrate filmmaking techniques in comedy. See it as it was supposed to be seen, in a 1926 silent film theatre, with the theatre pipe organ.

Champagne reception at 430pm with the film at 545pm, $15
Silent film alone, at 5pm, $10
The Canton Palace Theatre 605 Market Ave North
330-454-8172 for information

I'm hoping to be able to make it, but I'm not sure. But if any other silent film fans plan to go, let me know and I'll definitely meet you there!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

NYTimes Review of Griffith

A few posts down is a notice of some Kino DVDs on sale, along with my mentioning the D.W. Griffith box set.

Today's New York Times has a (favorable) review of the box set.

I guess I will have to buy it, after all!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Other Blogs: Lillian Gish

I have a not-so-secret fondness for clothing and shopping, and one blog I happened to stumble upon while on a fashion frenzy is from a young woman who loves thrift-store shopping (as I do), and uses as her inspiration silent film stars!

It's really encouraging that appreciation for silent films and the stars of the era are filtering down to the next generation.

A recent posting from Rhiannon has her talking about her biggest silent star influence, Lillian Gish. She recently found a silent-era scrapbook, and has been posting scans of some of the pages not only of Lillian but of others, as well. I thought I would add a link to her site in case anyone is interested in seeing the photos, along with her favorite short clip of Lillian (from The Mothering Heart).

Saturday, November 1, 2008

An Answer!

Recently I added the Photo Album to the site, and the first album to go up was my collection of Kromo Gravure actor/actress cards.

At the time, I had asked (rhetorically, I thought) if there were any sets other than the first one.

Well, the short answer is: Yes!

On a mission to spend my hard-earned money, I visited one of the sites listed under the Memorabilia section on the At the Movies pages,, and to my (very pleasant) surprise I found an entire page on the sets with a truly astounding amount of information.

So, I'm passing it along (although I have included a link on the Photo Album page). I'm really excited; it's very interesting!