• Film

    Dancing Mothers

    With her husband cheating on her, and her daughter, Clara Bow, going to speakeasys in adorable outfits, what is sexy 30-something Alice Joyce to do, but pretend to be French, seduce the man trying to seduce her daughter, and then leave her husband and the man she seduced for the great unknown. Yes, that’s right. Clara Bow wears cute outfits. There’s also an underground speakeasy, that somehow looks like a lifesized pirate ship: Which leads one to ask. Why isn’t life really like this? P.S. Alice Joyce is also pretty cute, especially when she’s pretending to be French. P.P.S. I saw this at the Niles Film Museum

  • Photography

    Ziegfeld Girl, 1910s & other Alfred Cheney Johnston work

    From Alfred Cheney Johnston, the main photographer for the Ziegfeld Follies. His photographs are exceptional for their use of props and focus, as well as, of course, the very pretty girls. There is one collection of his work out in book form, though it is no where near a complete collection. Some of his better work can be found online, but is rarely concentrated in one place. A few not-safe-for-work pictures can be seen after the jump.

  • Film

    Mantrap

    The first time I saw a picture of Clara Bow was in my history textbook junior year of high school. She had a two page spread as a representative of the Jazz Age. She was by far the most popular screen star of the era, and her films freely used her sexuality and the attention given to her sexuality, to discuss the changing role of women, and the rapidly changing structure of society. But none of this matters as much as the sheer energy she puts into her performances. You can (and should) see an example here. It is this sort of giddy, nearly frantic, performance, that brings up images…

  • Film

    Wings

    There are two really good reasons to see Wings. 1. Clara Bow is in it for short periods of time, wearing an adorable army outfit…. and sometimes nothing. 2. World War I planes crashing. The presence of a young Gary Cooper for 10 seconds has also been known to impress the ladies. I generally hesitate to go see it when it’s on though, because all of that is wrapped with a drawn out melodramatic plot, that prominently features a very grating Buddy Rogers. Seeing it at the Silent Movie Festival gave me some more appreciation for the film though. The restoration, which I mentioned yesterday, was beautiful. Particularly appreciated was the…

  • Events,  Film

    17th San Francisco Silent Film Festival

    I spent the end of the week at the San Francisco Silent Film Festival, which is, as far as I understand it, the largest silent movie event in the United States. The program covered four days, and I ended up seeing eleven movies, one lecture, and a number of Felix the cat cartoons. The festival does a remarkable job of both brining in the best possible accompaniment, and keeping the audience up to date on the latest news in what is actually a full blown industry attempting to keep silent movies alive. And with that came both good news and bad news.  The opening night movie was the recent $700,000…