When the Guardian film desk named my series Silent but deadly! perhaps that was a sign. Some people can’t take silent movies seriously. But is that a problem? My latest piece for the Guardian takes a look.
My latest Silent but deadly! column is about one of silent cinema’s biggest stars,. Douglas Fairbanks is hardly a forgotten name these days, but it’s rare that he is given his due. So I wrote about that, and Tracey Goessel’s brilliant new biography of Fairbanks, for the Guardian.
I reviewed Taschen’s The Charlie Chaplin Archives for Sight & Sound this month. It’s a massive book, devoted to a giant star, and really rather gorgeous. I also reviewed Undercrank Productions’ new DVD of Baby Peggy films, headlined by The Family Secret (1924). And now I can’t help but imagine how wonderful it would be to have seen Charlie Chaplin and Baby Peggy in a film together. Aw, not to be.
The Pordenone festival is the biggest event in the silent cinema calendar. I blogged from the festival every day for Silent London, and then wrote this report for the Guardian.
For my latest Guardian column, I wrote about Asquith’s Shooting Stars, and more silent movies about movie-making.
The BFI Love season is almost here, and with it, a new BFI compendium. I am chuffed beyond words to say that I have contributed a chapter to this book devoted to screen romance. My piece is called Dream Lovers, and it is all about love in the silent cinema, of course. The compendium is published on 12 October and you can buy a copy here on the BFI website.
The BFI is releasing a compilation film of suffragette and suffragette-related movies, to coincide with the release of, er, Suffragette, starring Carey Mulligan. In the November 2015 issue of Sight & Sound, I wrote a few words about this joyful anthology, which is called Make More Noise! Suffragettes in Silent Film.
PS And I wrote about it again for my Silent but Deadly! column on Guardian Film on 19 October.
Lillian Gish directed a film! Yes she did, and although she was very self-deprecating about it, I suspect she grew at little prouder of her achievement as she got older. Sadly Remodeling her Husband, starring her sister Dorothy, has long since been lost. But hope springs, and I contributed a note on it to this list of lost movies by female directors for Sight & Sound magazine.
The 18th British silent film festival in Leicester focused in particular on the the coming of sound to the British film industry. So I wrote about the ramifications of the “talker wave” in my latest Silent but deadly! piece for the Guardian.
For my second Silent but deadly! piece for the Guardian, I took a nod from the re-release of Steamboat Bill Jr. I wrote about Buster Keaton, and other silent-era stars who had the nerve and skill to do their own stunts.