Jump to content
 
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...

Lon Chaney: A Day of Silence


Kuklapolitan

Recommended Posts

*I know that all you silent film buffs are going to give me a really hard time with this, however, I for one do not see the wonder in presenting 24 hours of silent films. Come to think of it, I fail to see the wonder of presenting 24 hours of films starring any one film star! Silent films are not one genre of my favorites but I certainly can understand that this is supposed to be a classic movie station and silent films absolutely belong on this channel. If TCM wants to showcase an actor or actress why can't they do so without monopolizing the entire 24 hour block?*

 

*As good an actor as Lon Chaney was I cannot bear to see many of his films in a row because his acting choices always involved miming the less fortunate or grotesque. It feels like the entire day is in repeat mode and 24 hours is a long time. With other great stars it's a bit more tolerable because they appeared in many different types of movies...but I still maintain that 24 hours is too much of any good thing and most especially when the entire month is taken up with this type of tribute. What do you think?*

Link to post
Share on other sites

I must admit I am quite estatic with the showing of Lon Chaney's films for these 24 hours.

Though I have seen a few of them, such as The Phantom of the Opera and The Hunchback of Notre Dame, there are others that I have never seen, most notably The Monster and Where East is East. I would have loved to see The Penalty and Shadows, but I'm not complaining. :) .

To reply to your comment, I can understand what you are saying. We all have different tastes and preferences. I love silent films, especially from the horror genre. But hey, it's only one day. Tomorrow while others are watching Joanne Woodward movies, I'll spend the day at the beach :) .

Anyway, take care-- and if you don't want to see Lon in all his makeup, check out Tell It To The Marines this afternoon. One of his best and underrated films in my my humble opinion.

Link to post
Share on other sites

The silence is the most eloquent I've ever experienced. I came on board for *Oliver Twist* and will be here until *Phantom of the Opera* ends. To say I could write a book is an understatement. I knew it would be a good day but Fagin, the clown and Marine, oh my!

 

My favorite movie bio is *Man of a Thousand Faces* and I kept thinking of the scene where Robert Evans as Thalberg tells James Cagney as Chaney why he wants him for *Huntchback of Notre Dame.* I was trying not to filter the performances through this in case the scene was not factual but they seem to bear it out. That Chaney was able to turn his parents' physical and his personal griefs into this exquisite work on screen should uplift anybody's spirits.

 

I like that we are seeing him in roles other than the heavy make up ones. He was rather handsome in the beginning of *He Who Gets Slapped.* I loved *Tell it to the Marines;* at the beginning and end he reminded me of Lou Gossett, Jr. in *An Officer and a Gentleman*. *I found *Mr. Wu** a bit hard to take-it's the woman's fault and she must pay-but he was convincing in both gentle and ruthless sides. It was also interesting to see how movie special effects were done without ILM or computers. Today's movies need a lot more story and a little less technology.

 

I'm also seeing actors I'd only heard of but never seen-the tragic William Haines-or completely new to me. I'm also impressed at how the film quality improved between *Birth of a Nation* and these-so far a difference of only ten to thirteen years. In HDTV and game mode, they are so clear they could be from recent times.

 

He is playing people who are usually considered villains but are really tortured souls who have often been wronged. The clown's using Leo the Lion to do his dirty work in *Slapped* was not nice for this cat lover even if you knew why. I liked *Laugh, Clown, Laugh* and though Loretta Young and he worked well together.

 

The M-G-M tour short was a piece of history that must never be lost. Since the studio is now gone it's might one day be all there is to show what it looked like. The pride all these workers from actors to electricians took in their work showed through and no doubt they and their families pointed to this short and said "I/relative was in it if only for a moment". Again, I didn't recognize actors, directors, or writers but realize they must have been top drawer in that time to be shown. That alone tells me things like this must be preserved. It's already been five to six generations past.

 

Time for *Huntchback;* there are still chocolates in the box but this time you know what you'll get-something great.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I can't possibly express enough gratitude to TCM for this 24 hour Chaneyfest. My only "complaint" is that they should have made it 48 hours instead of 24, so they could have squeezed in The Penalty and a few more of his other great ones.

 

But to get BOTH the silent and sound versions of The Unholy Three, with Chaney as a granny and everyone's favorite cigar smoking infant, Harry Earles----and to know that tomorrow we'll get Joanne Woodward instead of Elvis Presley----the Gods are truly smiling upon us. Bless you, TCM.

 

And to anyone who doesn't appreciate The Man of A Thousand Faces, don't worry, you'll soon get back your Bing Crosbys and Mickey Rooneys and all the singing mermaids and faithful pooches. Just don't deny us our one month of respite from all that wholesomeness.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I know that all you silent film buffs are going to give me a really hard time with this, however, I for one do not see the wonder in presenting 24 hours of silent films.

 

Don't you get it? The "wonder" is that they ARE showing silent films. You can get "talkies" on any other channel.

If TCM wants to showcase an actor or actress why can't they do so without monopolizing the entire 24 hour block?

 

I'm just curious - why did it take you 15 days into the Summer Under the Stars festival to make a complaint about the format? All of the previous stars featured this month had the 24 hour block dedicated to their output, but it's only when it features a silent star that you're questioning the format.

 

Another question - do you mind subtitled films, or will Jean Gabin day have you raising the same question?

 

By the way, silent films are not a genre.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

> {quote:title=clore wrote:}{quote}

>

> Another question - do you mind subtitled films, or will Jean Gabin day have you raising the same question?

>

> By the way, silent films are not a genre.

Two good points, especially the second one. :D

Link to post
Share on other sites

>If TCM wants to showcase an actor or actress why can't they do so without monopolizing the entire 24 hour block?

 

Personally, I can't stand Lon Chaney, but look at it this way... today I finally got some important work done around the house. I cleaned up my office. I filed a lot of papers that needed to be filed. I organized some stuff that had just been sitting around in different places on the floor. I found all my missing pill bottles. I went outside for some fresh air.

 

After the past two weeks of non-stop movies I wanted to see, I finally got a break today. :)

Link to post
Share on other sites

> Fred C Dobbs wrote: Personally, I can't stand Lon Chaney, but look at it this way... today I finally got some important work done around the house. I cleaned up my office. I filed a lot of papers that needed to be filed. I organized some stuff that had just been sitting around in different places on the floor. I found all my missing pill bottles. I went outside for some fresh air.

> After the past two weeks of non-stop movies I wanted to see, I finally got a break today. :)

 

Today had something for everybody! :)

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

> {quote:title=FredCDobbs wrote:}{quote}

>

> Personally, I can't stand Lon Chaney, but look at it this way... today I finally got some important work done around the house. I cleaned up my office. I filed a lot of papers that needed to be filed. I organized some stuff that had just been sitting around in different places on the floor. I found all my missing pill bottles. I went outside for some fresh air.

>

> After the past two weeks of non-stop movies I wanted to see, I finally got a break today. :)

>

 

 

I guess that there were none of those horrible *French* films shown in the last two weeks. Just good old American stuff like singing cowboys, military heroics, John Wayne sagas, etc., etc., ad nauseum.

 

Right, Fred?

 

 

Gerald

Link to post
Share on other sites

Fred, that response of yours to Lon Chaney is exactly what makes the world go around. My own Clean Up The Yard and Vacuum the Rugs days take place whenever they're showing musicals or westerns, or pretty much anything from the WWII era that's not a film noir or Preston Sturges. We all weren't born with the same movie preferences, and the genius of TCM is that it manages to find room for all of us.

 

Well, except for that guy who hates everything from the 30's!

Link to post
Share on other sites

Why do the Tcm programmers insist on approaching the american cable viewing audience like we're a bunch of ritzy avant-garde snobs. Save the silent stuff for the film festivals and stop wasting america's time.

Link to post
Share on other sites

 

I just don't understand this point of view. TCM highlights a star each day. Of course some people either like, love or dislike the movies associated with said star.

 

Take Ben Johnson day. I'm sure there are some people out there that wonder why they would show films from this 'minor' player and one with such a slow delivery (not my own POV but I have heard this).

 

So one day of silent films for someone that was great in them, Lon Chaney. NOW, I only watched the Unknown and I admit I did so mainly because Joan Crawford was in it AND the fact my wife went to bed early. So while I'm not a big fan of slient films (I just lack the patience) I don't see how one can knock TCM because they don't show John Wayne movies 24 7.

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

I like Lon Chaney, but I only watched a couple of films. I've seen most of those scheduled yesterday and I had too much to do besides sitting in front of the TV no matter how much I love Lon Chaney. The co-op inspectors are coming this week for their annual inspection and I've not given the place a thorough going over since the last time they came.

 

Most of the time, I can do odd chores with the TV on in the background as I've seen so many titles that I only turn my head when there is a particular scene going on. One can't do that with a silent film, which is why I find them best for me in the overnight hours - when I'm trying to be quieter for the downstairs neighbors anyway.

 

But heck, it's only one day and Chaney deserves a day. I'm just surprised that they didn't pick August 26 as it's the anniversary of his death. And I would not have had to worry about the inspectors.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Cobolt,

 

You don't make any effort to understand Silent film, and thus have no right whatsoever to berate it. I have over a 1,000 Silent featrures in my collection, plus no idea how many shorts. And yet I am far from content. The more that you see, the more that you want to see. There are so many Silents that are completely inaccessible. And over 73% of all silent films are lost forever. Forgive me if I get angry at someone like you who wants to further repress a great art form. All my favorite movies are Silent Films. I offer no apologies for this, that's just the way it is. Alfred Hitchcock was asked to name his 10 favorite movies, and 8 of them were Silents. That alone should tell you that the medium was impact-full, profound, worthy of serious study and your respect.

Link to post
Share on other sites

These "inspectors" -- who are they? What do they do? I have a co-op and am not familiar with them. Sounds very strange, like something out of the X-Files.

 

I enjoyed the Chaney day. But I was looking forward to London After Midnight and didn't realize that it would be all stills. I'm glad they did that, I just wasn't prepared.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

These "inspectors" -- who are they? What do they do? I have a co-op and am not familiar with them. Sounds very strange, like something out of the X-Files.

 

They come to make sure that you don't have a washing machine - not allowed to have one. They also check to make sure that you don't have any air conditioners that you aren't already paying a premium for each month.

 

They also check the smoke alarm and gas detectors and to make sure that you have carpeting in all rooms except the kitchen and bathroom.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Leave it to you to bring up a subject just to put me down when my entire reason I subscribe to TCM is for silent movies. I dont dislike all 30's movies. But a large majority were low budget product. I dont appreciate being misquoted & I dont stoop that low because if I did I'd be removed. Show some courtesy if not respect.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Can some one please help me? I attempted to DVR the 24hr Chaney marathon. MOCKERY got messed up due to the weather, I subscribe to the DISH NETWORK. However, by the time HUNCHBACK was shown, the weather was clear. Yet, the last few seconds of HUNCHBACK as well as the credits were loped off of the DVR recording and tagged onto the begining of PHANTOM. Unlike the other films, there wasn't that much of a break between HUNCHBACK and PHANTOM. Is there a way around this? I guess one loss due to the weather and another due to whatever is pretty good considering that I got all the others, but it is annoying nonetheless.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I wasn't paying much attention, with the sound down, but I did notice a quick transition from one film to the next. I think one ran overtime a little.

 

Can't you set your recorder to record 24 hours straight, with no stops, and not set it to start and stop with each movie?

Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah, those clipped ends are annoying. Your DVR may or may not let you record 24 hours straight, but there are similar alternatives. You can program in blocks of time, ending at the end of a film that is somewhat shorter than its time slot, so it shouldn't run over.

 

Sometimes the "extend recording" feature can help. Say you want to record two films, and the first is almost as long as its time slot, and the second is sufficiently smaller than its time slot, and its time slot is 1.5, or 2 hours. Then, program for the first film, starting a few minutes early, and extend that recording 1.5 or 2 hours, to include the second recording, with no division between them.

Link to post
Share on other sites

First of all *Cobolt* if you don't like silent films...Don't Watch Them! Contrary to what you may think you are not TCM. You are one viewer and do not represent all the many other viewers of the channel.

 

Many of us love silents and highly appreciate a day of Lon Chaney films.

 

 

Anyways enough of that!

 

I got a DVR recently because I am actually working (albeit only a temporary job). Pretty much all of Lon Chaney's day is stored on my DVR (with a bunch of other SUTS films). When I will find the time to watch it all I have no idea.

 

I did attempt to watch the Hunchback of Notre Dame at 8. Unfortunately my cat had other ideas and wanted me to pay attention to him and not the movie. I now know that even if I am home if I really want to see something I should record that too. At least I have most of Lon's other movies to watch.

 

I did see random parts of Hunchback. I was impressed by the little I saw of Lon's performance (but then I was already in awe of him from watching Phantom).

 

However the scene in Hunchback that stood out the most to me was when they were about to torture Esmeralda to get her to confess. That scene was intense.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

© 2020 Turner Classic Movies Inc. A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Cookie Settings
×
×
  • Create New...