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Film Friday | Weekly Roundup

It’s been a busy week at Pretty Clever Films Headquarters thanks to TCM’s Summer Under the Stars. First we’re treated with Lon Chaney day and then Humphrey Bogart day. At night, I hear TIVO softly crying to himself in the other room. Even though I have roughly a gagillion movies to watch, I still took the time to scour the interwebs for the best goings on so you don’t have to. There seems to be an explosion of silent movie writings this week and here are a few of the best. Have a read, pop a bottle of bubbly to celebrate silent movie love, and happy viewing! Read the rest of this entry

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16 Lon Chaney Movies on TCM

Lon Chaney in The Phantom of the OperaThanks to TCM’s August series “Summer Under the Stars” we’re being treated to 16 Lon Chaney movies today. Sixteen! If you’re not familiar with Lon Chaney, “The Man of a Thousand Faces,” this schedule is beyond an excellent primer. If you are familiar, then kick back and enjoy not only Chaney’s amazing performances, but some of the best moves the silent era has to offer. Read the rest of this entry

Jackie Coogan in The Rag Man (1925)

Jackie Coogan - The Rag ManIf charm and a certain preternatural precociousness are the currency of a great child actor, then Jackie Coogan was a very rich little boy in the 1920’s. Best known as Charlie Chaplin’s sidekick in The Kid. Coogan was a meteoric success in the silent era. As with Shirley Temple a few years later, movie-goers couldn’t get enough of that round little face and that street urchin spunk. But alas… child actors have a very short shelf life and as he grew older Coogan fell out of audience favor. Coupled with the usual tragic tales of parental misuse of his wealth, Coogan struggled for acting work post WWII and landed mostly on television. But let’s rewind to 1925, when Coogan was still the boy king of the box office and delighting audiences with classic silents like The Rag Man. Read the rest of this entry

Today on TCM: Modern Times (1936) & The Great Dictator (1940)

Despite A Mythical Monkey’s disturbing front line report that many people (albeit with legitimate reasons) have failed to see The Chaplin Mutuals, I’m positive that all my savvy, silent comedy loving readers have seen Chaplin’s classic features Modern Times and The Great Dictators. However, both of these movies reward repeat viewings, or at least TIVOing for future enjoyment. Today TCM is airing Modern Times at 6 pm EST, followed by The Great Dictator at 8 pm EST. To while away the hours between then and now, check out these interesting reads:

Watch Chaplin’s final speech from The Great Dictator

Today on TCM: Princess Tam Tam (1935)

Josephine Baker - Princess Tam TamAs part of the Race and Hollywood: Arab Images on Film series, TCM is airing Princess Tam Tam (1935) tonight at 8:00 pm EST. Through the prism of academic and feminist discourse, Josephine Baker equals more than the sum of her acting, dancing, and singing talents. Take a tour through some of the academic examinations of the politics of Josephine Baker and watch Princess Tam Tam. Setting aside polemics, how does Baker stack up against Hollywood’s greatest actresses? Do the academics go too far, or not far enough, in their external readings of her career?

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