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Excerpt from James Agee’s “Comedy’s Greatest Era”

When someone asks me why they should care about Buster Keaton or Charlie Chaplin or Harold Llyod or silent film in general, I point them to this statement from the great James Agee.

All these people zipped and caromed about the pristine world of the screen as jazzily as a convention of water bugs. Words can hardly suggest how energetically they collided and bounced apart, meeting in full gallop around the house; how hard and how often they fell on their backsides; or with what fantastically adroit clumsiness they got themselves fouled up in folding ladders, garden hoses, tethered animals and each others’ headlong cross-purposes. The gestures were ferociously emphatic; not a line or motion of the body was wasted or inarticulate.

James Agee, “Comedy’s Greatest Era,” Life, September 5, 1949


Noir of the Week Reviews “Conflict”

Conflict - Humphrey Bogart - Sydney Greenstreet - Lobby Card - Pretty Clever FilmsWhile poking about the interwebs, I found this excellent 2006 review of Conflict from Noir of the Week. Sadly, as the review notes, Conflict is still not available on dvd. It does appear to be available from Amazon on something called Vee Aych Ess, whatever that is.  Spoilers ahoy.

Read the Original NYTimes Review of “Conflict”

Conflict - Humphrey Bogart - Sydney Greenstreet - Lobby Card - Pretty Clever FilmsRead the 1945 NYTimes Review for Conflict. Do you fit this description:

The appeal of this film, which is unpleasant and obviously morbid in theme, will be to those customers who are fascinated by the anxieties of a tortured man, who like to listen figuratively to the desperate thumping of a telltale heart.

Then read my review of Conflict, where I never refer to Greenstreet’s battle with weight.

Hitchcock: Order in Chaos

Hitchcock: Order in Chaos,” an interesting little piece about Hitchcock within-yet-without the studio system. Stage Fright rates a mention.

Stay Tuned for Comic The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari

Erotic comic book artist Dave McKean  talks up his erotic story Celluloid and drops a mention of The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari.

McKean Draws a Sexy Celluloid from Comic Book Resources.

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