Sunday, November 16, 2008

Currently Watching: The Godless Girl (1929)

I had a wonderfully unique opportunity last night.  I screened Cecil B. DeMille's rarely seen social commentary "The Godless Girl" in a beautiful restored print at a special screening featuring world-renowned organist Dennis James.  The film was fairly good, with DeMille showing overt flashes of sensationalism throughout that made the film feel wonderfully campy and dramatic.  The entire audience was interactive with the film throughout, making it even more enjoyable.

Beyond anything I could say about the film and its merits is Dennis James, who composed and played 128 minutes worth of original score inspired by other classic movie scores from the same era.  James was like a machine, never missing a beat and covering a wide range of emotions that perfectly accompanied every shot of every scene.  He's a true virtuoso at his art, and having the chance to watch him perform was a true luxury.  It was the first time I'd watched a silent film in an "authentic" setting; it was a whole new kind of movie-watching environment that really made me feel nostalgic for the loss of this special art form.

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