Archive for Bebe Daniels

Olive Borden IS John Ford

Posted in FILM with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 6, 2019 by dcairns

Pictureplayer magazine got several leading ladies to drag up as their directors, a thing not often enough done. Olive Borden had just experienced John Ford’s little ways in THREE BAD MEN.

Nobody ever does Fred Niblo. I’m impressed.

Bebe picks the wrong DeMille brother, from History’s viewpoint, though maybe not Art’s.

I’m not 100% sure the skirt is authentic. William DeMille said, “Cecil has a habit of biting off more than he can chew, then chewing it.”

This obscure choice may be why we don’t hear so much about Dolores.

Marvelous. Should really be a cigar, though, right?

The Sunday Intertitle: Luke Out

Posted in FILM with tags , , , , on August 11, 2019 by dcairns

OK, one last Lonesome Luke film, LUKE JOINS THE NAVY. It seems to be the last one on YouTube, increbibly: they’re all out of copyright so I thought there might be lots.

This one is… short and mostly inoffensive. There’s a little dwarf-kicking, but they expect it, don’t they. The film looks to be only a fragment or truncation. Lloyd shows great agility. There’s even an intertitle, luckily for me, though it looks modern and who knows if even the wording is authentic?

Again, there’s no real difference between Snub Pollard’s character and Luke’s. Why have the little guy at all? When Harold discovered the “glasses character,” who quickly revealed a gentler side, Snub almost immediately became the heavy, which gave him a reason for being there. And maybe it’s OK to have a short, stocky villain? Like Yosemite Sam? Although I think in the later features Lloyd always benefitted from being up against impossible odds, otherwise it was too obvious that the clean-cut boy next door was going to win.

My favourite bit here might be the zero tolerance approach to pathos. Luke definitively loses the girl (an embryonic Bebe Daniels, I think) less than a minute in, and launches into a vile, gurning bawl. An old-timer smacks him hard in the face, and he snaps right out of it and gets back to his knockabout. Good!

The Sunday Intertitle: Use Force, Luke!

Posted in FILM with tags , , , , on August 4, 2019 by dcairns

LUKE’S MOVIE MUDDLE (1916) AKA THE CINEMA DIRECTOR… gets by, like MENILMONTANT and THE LAST LAUGH, without intertitles, though this particular print, the sharpest on YouTube, has no main title either.

But text seems uncalled-for, as the action is so basic. If last week’s Luke short was just people hitting each other with clubs, and it was, this one is all people being shoved into an out of chairs. The site of suffering shifts downwards from cranium to coccyx.

All very limited, but short enough not to outstay its welcome. And there’s nostalgia for the day when your fellow customers’ hats were the biggest nuisance you faced in the audience. Actually, no — 1916 punters no doubt talked loudly, crunched their food, rustled their wrappers and laughed in the wrong places, we just don’t get that here because its a silent film.