Australia’s Silent Film Festival

“It’s like writing history with lightning!” – President Woodrow Wilson, upon seeing his first film in 1915

Sydney (Jun 26, 2021 + Jul 3 + 10 + 18 + 25, 2021)

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Over 100 Years !  The Last of the Mohicans (1920)  directed by Maurice Tourneur and Clarence Brown. One of the cast members is Australian born, Sydney Deane.

“Two of the silent era’s most talented and prominent directors, Maurice Tourneur and Clarence Brown, joined forces to create an unforgettable and visually delightful rendition of this classic 1826 American novel of frontier life by James Fenimore Cooper. This excellent film adaptation of The Last of the Mohicans still outshines the two later cinematic outings from 1936 and 1992. 

Set in 1757, amidst the turmoil of a war-torn nation struggling for its identity, the British fight French forces which have rallied together with native Indian tribes.   Basing his novel on real people who played a significant part in the French and Indian War, history is realistically re-enacted while also telling a deeply moving personal story of individuals.

Frenchman Maurice Tourneur’s smooth and sophisticated style adds elegance and grace to this powerful, action-packed drama, while also capturing beautiful scenery.   Like Lorna Doone (1922), The Blue Bird (1918) and The Poor Little Rich Girl (1917) starring Mary Pickford, The Last of the Mohicans shows sensitive attention to detail, beautiful photography, sets and costumes, and above all, a story superbly told in the poignant medium of silent film.

Two Australians also contributed to the success of The Last of the Mohicans, namely first-class cricket legend Sydney Deane, playing the part of General Webb, and Joseph Singleton.  Deane appeared in dozens of roles, large and small, during the silent era, first working for Jesse Lasky in various Cecil B. DeMille productions, and then for Universal Pictures.  Joseph Singleton also made his mark on Hollywood, working in films as early as 1913, and appearing with Sydney Deane in Brewster’s Millions in 1914, as well as another early DeMille production, The Squaw Man.  He enjoyed various roles in three popular early action-comedies starring silent film legend, Douglas Fairbanks, Sr, and played Tom Jordan in the William S. Hart Western saga, The Toll Gate (1925).

Altogether, these aspects make The Last of the Mohicans a film ahead of its time in 1920, and it is still an outstanding and highly praised work of early cinema.  “ Barbara Underwood

Read a fine essay at    http://www.tcm.com/this-month/article/480765%7C0/The-Last-of-the-Mohicans.html
Over 100 Years !  The Last of the Mohicans (1920)  directed by Maurice Tourneur and Clarence Brown. One of the cast members is Australian born, Sydney Deane.

“Two of the silent era’s most talented and prominent directors, Maurice Tourneur and Clarence Brown, joined forces to create an unforgettable and visually delightful rendition of this classic 1826 American novel of frontier life by James Fenimore Cooper. This excellent film adaptation of The Last of the Mohicans still outshines the two later cinematic outings from 1936 and 1992. 

Set in 1757, amidst the turmoil of a war-torn nation struggling for its identity, the British fight French forces which have rallied together with native Indian tribes.   Basing his novel on real people who played a significant part in the French and Indian War, history is realistically re-enacted while also telling a deeply moving personal story of individuals.

Frenchman Maurice Tourneur’s smooth and sophisticated style adds elegance and grace to this powerful, action-packed drama, while also capturing beautiful scenery.   Like Lorna Doone (1922), The Blue Bird (1918) and The Poor Little Rich Girl (1917) starring Mary Pickford, The Last of the Mohicans shows sensitive attention to detail, beautiful photography, sets and costumes, and above all, a story superbly told in the poignant medium of silent film.

Two Australians also contributed to the success of The Last of the Mohicans, namely first-class cricket legend Sydney Deane, playing the part of General Webb, and Joseph Singleton.  Deane appeared in dozens of roles, large and small, during the silent era, first working for Jesse Lasky in various Cecil B. DeMille productions, and then for Universal Pictures.  Joseph Singleton also made his mark on Hollywood, working in films as early as 1913, and appearing with Sydney Deane in Brewster’s Millions in 1914, as well as another early DeMille production, The Squaw Man.  He enjoyed various roles in three popular early action-comedies starring silent film legend, Douglas Fairbanks, Sr, and played Tom Jordan in the William S. Hart Western saga, The Toll Gate (1925).

Altogether, these aspects make The Last of the Mohicans a film ahead of its time in 1920, and it is still an outstanding and highly praised work of early cinema.  “ Barbara Underwood

Read a fine essay at    http://www.tcm.com/this-month/article/480765%7C0/The-Last-of-the-Mohicans.html
Over 100 Years !  The Last of the Mohicans (1920)  directed by Maurice Tourneur and Clarence Brown. One of the cast members is Australian born, Sydney Deane.

“Two of the silent era’s most talented and prominent directors, Maurice Tourneur and Clarence Brown, joined forces to create an unforgettable and visually delightful rendition of this classic 1826 American novel of frontier life by James Fenimore Cooper. This excellent film adaptation of The Last of the Mohicans still outshines the two later cinematic outings from 1936 and 1992. 

Set in 1757, amidst the turmoil of a war-torn nation struggling for its identity, the British fight French forces which have rallied together with native Indian tribes.   Basing his novel on real people who played a significant part in the French and Indian War, history is realistically re-enacted while also telling a deeply moving personal story of individuals.

Frenchman Maurice Tourneur’s smooth and sophisticated style adds elegance and grace to this powerful, action-packed drama, while also capturing beautiful scenery.   Like Lorna Doone (1922), The Blue Bird (1918) and The Poor Little Rich Girl (1917) starring Mary Pickford, The Last of the Mohicans shows sensitive attention to detail, beautiful photography, sets and costumes, and above all, a story superbly told in the poignant medium of silent film.

Two Australians also contributed to the success of The Last of the Mohicans, namely first-class cricket legend Sydney Deane, playing the part of General Webb, and Joseph Singleton.  Deane appeared in dozens of roles, large and small, during the silent era, first working for Jesse Lasky in various Cecil B. DeMille productions, and then for Universal Pictures.  Joseph Singleton also made his mark on Hollywood, working in films as early as 1913, and appearing with Sydney Deane in Brewster’s Millions in 1914, as well as another early DeMille production, The Squaw Man.  He enjoyed various roles in three popular early action-comedies starring silent film legend, Douglas Fairbanks, Sr, and played Tom Jordan in the William S. Hart Western saga, The Toll Gate (1925).

Altogether, these aspects make The Last of the Mohicans a film ahead of its time in 1920, and it is still an outstanding and highly praised work of early cinema.  “ Barbara Underwood

Read a fine essay at    http://www.tcm.com/this-month/article/480765%7C0/The-Last-of-the-Mohicans.html
Over 100 Years !  The Last of the Mohicans (1920)  directed by Maurice Tourneur and Clarence Brown. One of the cast members is Australian born, Sydney Deane.

“Two of the silent era’s most talented and prominent directors, Maurice Tourneur and Clarence Brown, joined forces to create an unforgettable and visually delightful rendition of this classic 1826 American novel of frontier life by James Fenimore Cooper. This excellent film adaptation of The Last of the Mohicans still outshines the two later cinematic outings from 1936 and 1992. 

Set in 1757, amidst the turmoil of a war-torn nation struggling for its identity, the British fight French forces which have rallied together with native Indian tribes.   Basing his novel on real people who played a significant part in the French and Indian War, history is realistically re-enacted while also telling a deeply moving personal story of individuals.

Frenchman Maurice Tourneur’s smooth and sophisticated style adds elegance and grace to this powerful, action-packed drama, while also capturing beautiful scenery.   Like Lorna Doone (1922), The Blue Bird (1918) and The Poor Little Rich Girl (1917) starring Mary Pickford, The Last of the Mohicans shows sensitive attention to detail, beautiful photography, sets and costumes, and above all, a story superbly told in the poignant medium of silent film.

Two Australians also contributed to the success of The Last of the Mohicans, namely first-class cricket legend Sydney Deane, playing the part of General Webb, and Joseph Singleton.  Deane appeared in dozens of roles, large and small, during the silent era, first working for Jesse Lasky in various Cecil B. DeMille productions, and then for Universal Pictures.  Joseph Singleton also made his mark on Hollywood, working in films as early as 1913, and appearing with Sydney Deane in Brewster’s Millions in 1914, as well as another early DeMille production, The Squaw Man.  He enjoyed various roles in three popular early action-comedies starring silent film legend, Douglas Fairbanks, Sr, and played Tom Jordan in the William S. Hart Western saga, The Toll Gate (1925).

Altogether, these aspects make The Last of the Mohicans a film ahead of its time in 1920, and it is still an outstanding and highly praised work of early cinema.  “ Barbara Underwood

Read a fine essay at    http://www.tcm.com/this-month/article/480765%7C0/The-Last-of-the-Mohicans.html
Over 100 Years !  The Last of the Mohicans (1920)  directed by Maurice Tourneur and Clarence Brown. One of the cast members is Australian born, Sydney Deane.

“Two of the silent era’s most talented and prominent directors, Maurice Tourneur and Clarence Brown, joined forces to create an unforgettable and visually delightful rendition of this classic 1826 American novel of frontier life by James Fenimore Cooper. This excellent film adaptation of The Last of the Mohicans still outshines the two later cinematic outings from 1936 and 1992. 

Set in 1757, amidst the turmoil of a war-torn nation struggling for its identity, the British fight French forces which have rallied together with native Indian tribes.   Basing his novel on real people who played a significant part in the French and Indian War, history is realistically re-enacted while also telling a deeply moving personal story of individuals.

Frenchman Maurice Tourneur’s smooth and sophisticated style adds elegance and grace to this powerful, action-packed drama, while also capturing beautiful scenery.   Like Lorna Doone (1922), The Blue Bird (1918) and The Poor Little Rich Girl (1917) starring Mary Pickford, The Last of the Mohicans shows sensitive attention to detail, beautiful photography, sets and costumes, and above all, a story superbly told in the poignant medium of silent film.

Two Australians also contributed to the success of The Last of the Mohicans, namely first-class cricket legend Sydney Deane, playing the part of General Webb, and Joseph Singleton.  Deane appeared in dozens of roles, large and small, during the silent era, first working for Jesse Lasky in various Cecil B. DeMille productions, and then for Universal Pictures.  Joseph Singleton also made his mark on Hollywood, working in films as early as 1913, and appearing with Sydney Deane in Brewster’s Millions in 1914, as well as another early DeMille production, The Squaw Man.  He enjoyed various roles in three popular early action-comedies starring silent film legend, Douglas Fairbanks, Sr, and played Tom Jordan in the William S. Hart Western saga, The Toll Gate (1925).

Altogether, these aspects make The Last of the Mohicans a film ahead of its time in 1920, and it is still an outstanding and highly praised work of early cinema.  “ Barbara Underwood

Read a fine essay at    http://www.tcm.com/this-month/article/480765%7C0/The-Last-of-the-Mohicans.html
Over 100 Years !  The Last of the Mohicans (1920)  directed by Maurice Tourneur and Clarence Brown. One of the cast members is Australian born, Sydney Deane.

“Two of the silent era’s most talented and prominent directors, Maurice Tourneur and Clarence Brown, joined forces to create an unforgettable and visually delightful rendition of this classic 1826 American novel of frontier life by James Fenimore Cooper. This excellent film adaptation of The Last of the Mohicans still outshines the two later cinematic outings from 1936 and 1992. 

Set in 1757, amidst the turmoil of a war-torn nation struggling for its identity, the British fight French forces which have rallied together with native Indian tribes.   Basing his novel on real people who played a significant part in the French and Indian War, history is realistically re-enacted while also telling a deeply moving personal story of individuals.

Frenchman Maurice Tourneur’s smooth and sophisticated style adds elegance and grace to this powerful, action-packed drama, while also capturing beautiful scenery.   Like Lorna Doone (1922), The Blue Bird (1918) and The Poor Little Rich Girl (1917) starring Mary Pickford, The Last of the Mohicans shows sensitive attention to detail, beautiful photography, sets and costumes, and above all, a story superbly told in the poignant medium of silent film.

Two Australians also contributed to the success of The Last of the Mohicans, namely first-class cricket legend Sydney Deane, playing the part of General Webb, and Joseph Singleton.  Deane appeared in dozens of roles, large and small, during the silent era, first working for Jesse Lasky in various Cecil B. DeMille productions, and then for Universal Pictures.  Joseph Singleton also made his mark on Hollywood, working in films as early as 1913, and appearing with Sydney Deane in Brewster’s Millions in 1914, as well as another early DeMille production, The Squaw Man.  He enjoyed various roles in three popular early action-comedies starring silent film legend, Douglas Fairbanks, Sr, and played Tom Jordan in the William S. Hart Western saga, The Toll Gate (1925).

Altogether, these aspects make The Last of the Mohicans a film ahead of its time in 1920, and it is still an outstanding and highly praised work of early cinema.  “ Barbara Underwood

Read a fine essay at    http://www.tcm.com/this-month/article/480765%7C0/The-Last-of-the-Mohicans.html
100 Years young!  Why Change Your Wife (1920) is a silent domestic comedy directed by Cecil B DeMille and starring Gloria Swanson.

In this classic silent comedy, Robert (Thomas Meighan) has become bored with his bland and old-fashioned wife, Beth (Gloria Swanson), while her patience is tested by his common desires and lowbrow tastes. Divorcing Beth and remarrying stylish jazz doll Sally (Bebe Daniels) seems like a good idea at the time, but when Robert gets a look at his newly glamorized and revamped ex-wife, he begins to question the hasty switch. Is he too late to win Beth back?

"After enjoying the first release of Cecil B De Mille's three films dealing with marriage, namely "Don't Change Your Husband", I was looking forward to a similar close-to-real-life portrayal of married life with roles reversed in "Why Change Your Wife?" and I was not disappointed. In fact, just as I thought the film was about to end in a very similar fashion as "Don't Change Your Husband", the plot suddenly took an unexpected turn, and although events became rather more unrealistic, it was nevertheless quite suspenseful and enjoyable entertainment. Like the first film which also stars Gloria Swanson, "Why Change Your Wife" has a message and lesson to be learned; this time directed at wives who are too critical and complaining, and more like a `governess' than a sweetheart or lover to her husband. I enjoyed Swanson in her part as the prim and proper wife, as well as Bebe Daniels in her role as `the other woman' with whom the husband can have more fun - at least before he marries her and finds out that wives are all the same! There is a bit of good humour in it all while still getting a true-to-life message across, and Cecil B De Mille handles the plot, attention to certain details and the characters' emotions superbly, as always. Another highlight of this film - and another famous De Mille touch - is the abundance of the lavish and unique women's fashion of 1920 which I found quite fascinating.” Barbara Underwood

Read a fine essay at    https://silentlondon.co.uk/2014/03/25/why-change-your-wife-cecil-b-demille-and-the-new-woman/
100 Years young!  Why Change Your Wife (1920) is a silent domestic comedy directed by Cecil B DeMille and starring Gloria Swanson.

In this classic silent comedy, Robert (Thomas Meighan) has become bored with his bland and old-fashioned wife, Beth (Gloria Swanson), while her patience is tested by his common desires and lowbrow tastes. Divorcing Beth and remarrying stylish jazz doll Sally (Bebe Daniels) seems like a good idea at the time, but when Robert gets a look at his newly glamorized and revamped ex-wife, he begins to question the hasty switch. Is he too late to win Beth back?

"After enjoying the first release of Cecil B De Mille's three films dealing with marriage, namely "Don't Change Your Husband", I was looking forward to a similar close-to-real-life portrayal of married life with roles reversed in "Why Change Your Wife?" and I was not disappointed. In fact, just as I thought the film was about to end in a very similar fashion as "Don't Change Your Husband", the plot suddenly took an unexpected turn, and although events became rather more unrealistic, it was nevertheless quite suspenseful and enjoyable entertainment. Like the first film which also stars Gloria Swanson, "Why Change Your Wife" has a message and lesson to be learned; this time directed at wives who are too critical and complaining, and more like a `governess' than a sweetheart or lover to her husband. I enjoyed Swanson in her part as the prim and proper wife, as well as Bebe Daniels in her role as `the other woman' with whom the husband can have more fun - at least before he marries her and finds out that wives are all the same! There is a bit of good humour in it all while still getting a true-to-life message across, and Cecil B De Mille handles the plot, attention to certain details and the characters' emotions superbly, as always. Another highlight of this film - and another famous De Mille touch - is the abundance of the lavish and unique women's fashion of 1920 which I found quite fascinating.” Barbara Underwood

Read a fine essay at    https://silentlondon.co.uk/2014/03/25/why-change-your-wife-cecil-b-demille-and-the-new-woman/
100 Years young!  Why Change Your Wife (1920) is a silent domestic comedy directed by Cecil B DeMille and starring Gloria Swanson.

In this classic silent comedy, Robert (Thomas Meighan) has become bored with his bland and old-fashioned wife, Beth (Gloria Swanson), while her patience is tested by his common desires and lowbrow tastes. Divorcing Beth and remarrying stylish jazz doll Sally (Bebe Daniels) seems like a good idea at the time, but when Robert gets a look at his newly glamorized and revamped ex-wife, he begins to question the hasty switch. Is he too late to win Beth back?

"After enjoying the first release of Cecil B De Mille's three films dealing with marriage, namely "Don't Change Your Husband", I was looking forward to a similar close-to-real-life portrayal of married life with roles reversed in "Why Change Your Wife?" and I was not disappointed. In fact, just as I thought the film was about to end in a very similar fashion as "Don't Change Your Husband", the plot suddenly took an unexpected turn, and although events became rather more unrealistic, it was nevertheless quite suspenseful and enjoyable entertainment. Like the first film which also stars Gloria Swanson, "Why Change Your Wife" has a message and lesson to be learned; this time directed at wives who are too critical and complaining, and more like a `governess' than a sweetheart or lover to her husband. I enjoyed Swanson in her part as the prim and proper wife, as well as Bebe Daniels in her role as `the other woman' with whom the husband can have more fun - at least before he marries her and finds out that wives are all the same! There is a bit of good humour in it all while still getting a true-to-life message across, and Cecil B De Mille handles the plot, attention to certain details and the characters' emotions superbly, as always. Another highlight of this film - and another famous De Mille touch - is the abundance of the lavish and unique women's fashion of 1920 which I found quite fascinating.” Barbara Underwood

Read a fine essay at    https://silentlondon.co.uk/2014/03/25/why-change-your-wife-cecil-b-demille-and-the-new-woman/
100 Years young!  Why Change Your Wife (1920) is a silent domestic comedy directed by Cecil B DeMille and starring Gloria Swanson.

In this classic silent comedy, Robert (Thomas Meighan) has become bored with his bland and old-fashioned wife, Beth (Gloria Swanson), while her patience is tested by his common desires and lowbrow tastes. Divorcing Beth and remarrying stylish jazz doll Sally (Bebe Daniels) seems like a good idea at the time, but when Robert gets a look at his newly glamorized and revamped ex-wife, he begins to question the hasty switch. Is he too late to win Beth back?

"After enjoying the first release of Cecil B De Mille's three films dealing with marriage, namely "Don't Change Your Husband", I was looking forward to a similar close-to-real-life portrayal of married life with roles reversed in "Why Change Your Wife?" and I was not disappointed. In fact, just as I thought the film was about to end in a very similar fashion as "Don't Change Your Husband", the plot suddenly took an unexpected turn, and although events became rather more unrealistic, it was nevertheless quite suspenseful and enjoyable entertainment. Like the first film which also stars Gloria Swanson, "Why Change Your Wife" has a message and lesson to be learned; this time directed at wives who are too critical and complaining, and more like a `governess' than a sweetheart or lover to her husband. I enjoyed Swanson in her part as the prim and proper wife, as well as Bebe Daniels in her role as `the other woman' with whom the husband can have more fun - at least before he marries her and finds out that wives are all the same! There is a bit of good humour in it all while still getting a true-to-life message across, and Cecil B De Mille handles the plot, attention to certain details and the characters' emotions superbly, as always. Another highlight of this film - and another famous De Mille touch - is the abundance of the lavish and unique women's fashion of 1920 which I found quite fascinating.” Barbara Underwood

Read a fine essay at    https://silentlondon.co.uk/2014/03/25/why-change-your-wife-cecil-b-demille-and-the-new-woman/
100 Years young!  Why Change Your Wife (1920) is a silent domestic comedy directed by Cecil B DeMille and starring Gloria Swanson.

In this classic silent comedy, Robert (Thomas Meighan) has become bored with his bland and old-fashioned wife, Beth (Gloria Swanson), while her patience is tested by his common desires and lowbrow tastes. Divorcing Beth and remarrying stylish jazz doll Sally (Bebe Daniels) seems like a good idea at the time, but when Robert gets a look at his newly glamorized and revamped ex-wife, he begins to question the hasty switch. Is he too late to win Beth back?

"After enjoying the first release of Cecil B De Mille's three films dealing with marriage, namely "Don't Change Your Husband", I was looking forward to a similar close-to-real-life portrayal of married life with roles reversed in "Why Change Your Wife?" and I was not disappointed. In fact, just as I thought the film was about to end in a very similar fashion as "Don't Change Your Husband", the plot suddenly took an unexpected turn, and although events became rather more unrealistic, it was nevertheless quite suspenseful and enjoyable entertainment. Like the first film which also stars Gloria Swanson, "Why Change Your Wife" has a message and lesson to be learned; this time directed at wives who are too critical and complaining, and more like a `governess' than a sweetheart or lover to her husband. I enjoyed Swanson in her part as the prim and proper wife, as well as Bebe Daniels in her role as `the other woman' with whom the husband can have more fun - at least before he marries her and finds out that wives are all the same! There is a bit of good humour in it all while still getting a true-to-life message across, and Cecil B De Mille handles the plot, attention to certain details and the characters' emotions superbly, as always. Another highlight of this film - and another famous De Mille touch - is the abundance of the lavish and unique women's fashion of 1920 which I found quite fascinating.” Barbara Underwood

Read a fine essay at    https://silentlondon.co.uk/2014/03/25/why-change-your-wife-cecil-b-demille-and-the-new-woman/
100 Years young!  Why Change Your Wife (1920) is a silent domestic comedy directed by Cecil B DeMille and starring Gloria Swanson.

In this classic silent comedy, Robert (Thomas Meighan) has become bored with his bland and old-fashioned wife, Beth (Gloria Swanson), while her patience is tested by his common desires and lowbrow tastes. Divorcing Beth and remarrying stylish jazz doll Sally (Bebe Daniels) seems like a good idea at the time, but when Robert gets a look at his newly glamorized and revamped ex-wife, he begins to question the hasty switch. Is he too late to win Beth back?

"After enjoying the first release of Cecil B De Mille's three films dealing with marriage, namely "Don't Change Your Husband", I was looking forward to a similar close-to-real-life portrayal of married life with roles reversed in "Why Change Your Wife?" and I was not disappointed. In fact, just as I thought the film was about to end in a very similar fashion as "Don't Change Your Husband", the plot suddenly took an unexpected turn, and although events became rather more unrealistic, it was nevertheless quite suspenseful and enjoyable entertainment. Like the first film which also stars Gloria Swanson, "Why Change Your Wife" has a message and lesson to be learned; this time directed at wives who are too critical and complaining, and more like a `governess' than a sweetheart or lover to her husband. I enjoyed Swanson in her part as the prim and proper wife, as well as Bebe Daniels in her role as `the other woman' with whom the husband can have more fun - at least before he marries her and finds out that wives are all the same! There is a bit of good humour in it all while still getting a true-to-life message across, and Cecil B De Mille handles the plot, attention to certain details and the characters' emotions superbly, as always. Another highlight of this film - and another famous De Mille touch - is the abundance of the lavish and unique women's fashion of 1920 which I found quite fascinating.” Barbara Underwood

Read a fine essay at    https://silentlondon.co.uk/2014/03/25/why-change-your-wife-cecil-b-demille-and-the-new-woman/
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