Cinefest 2007

Cinefest 2007, the 27th edition of the yearly four-day rare film marathon held in Syracuse, NY, will take place from March 15-18.

Among the scheduled films – whether tentative or confirmed – are:

  • Charley ChaseThe Spanish-language version of the Harry Langdon two-reeler The Big Kick (1930), renamed La Estación de gasolina;
  • the American premiere of the 46-minute French-language version of the Charley Chase (right) 1930 two-reeler All Teed Up (co-written by future director Leo McCarey), Le Joueur de golf (“The Golf Player”);
  • and the Chase short The Way of All Pants (1927), not a spoof of the Emil Jannings melodrama The Way of All Flesh (which came out that same year – and is now lost).

On the serious side, there are:

  • Lewis Milestone's 1934 melodrama The Captain Hates the Sea, silent film star John Gilbert's last film (also with Victor McLaglen and Fay Wray);
  • Robert Florey's 1929 musical The Battle of Paris, which offers a rare screen appearance by stage legend Gertrude Lawrence;
  • Things to Come by William Cameron Menziesand Things to Come (right), art director William Cameron Menzies' take on H.G. Wells' futuristic novel. There's lots of scenery chewing, what with Raymond Massey and Ralph Richardson onboard – but then again, the sets do look delicious, so who can blame them? (Now, Wells' did foresee World War II, but he failed to predict 21st-century evils such as global warming, the ascendancy of religious fanatics, and television reality shows.)

Other Cinefest highlights include:

  • A rare screening of The Night of Love, a 1927 romantic drama starring two of the most popular pair of lovebirds in film history, Ronald Colman and Vilma Banky;
  • Herbert Blaché's 1920 comedy The New York Idea, with future Oscar winner Alice Brady (long before she became a ditzy matron in Hollywood comedies of the 1930s), Lowell Sherman (long before he directed Katharine Hepburn to her first Oscar, for Morning Glory), and Hedda Hopper (long before she became a precursor to the gossip rags – both in print and online – that now plague the planet).
  • Madeleine Carroll in I Was a Spy by Victor Saville

  • and Victor Saville's well-respected I Was a Spy (right), a 1933 thriller starring Madeleine Carroll as a beautiful Belgian spy, the always reliable Herbert Marshall, and Nazi refugee Conrad Veidt, in addition to future Oscar winner Edmund Gwenn and stage veteran Gerald Du Maurier in supporting roles;

And finally…

There'll be 35mm presentations of the following films at the Palace Theater:

  • Within the Law, future Oscar winner Frank Lloyd's 1923 melodrama starring Norma Talmadge, one of the biggest film stars ever, and popular leading man Jack Mulhall. (Joan Crawford starred in the 1930 talkie remake, Paid.)
  • Her Husband's Trademark, Sam Wood's 1922 society melo (make sure to bring a handkerchief, as you'll probably laugh so hard you'll end up sobbing uncontrollably) with Gloria Swanson.
  • The Spoilers with Gary Cooper, Betty Compson, Kay JohnsonThe Spoilers, Edward Carewe's 1930 Yukon action tale with Gary Cooper, Kay Johnson (mother of actor James Cromwell), Betty Compson, and William “Stage” Boyd (a notorious troublemaker, not to be confused with the William Boyd of Hopalong Cassidy fame).

Piano accompaniment provided by Jon Mirsalis, Philip Carli, and Gabriel Thibaudeau.

Registration or admission fee is required of each person attending Cinefest. For more information, check out the Cinefest website.

Cinefest 2007 © 2004–2018 Alt Film Guide and/or author(s).
Text NOT to be reproduced without prior written consent.

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