Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Get scared in 16mm on Saturday, Oct. 16

We just arranged for an afternoon of vintage film screenings (including some silents) at the Manchester (N.H.) Public Library, 405 Pine St., in beautiful downtown Manchester. My colleague Dave Stevenson is unlocking his vault of 16mm prints as part of a meeting of the local "tent" of the Sons of the Desert, the Laurel & Hardy Appreciation Society. (By the way, Manchester is hosting their international convention in 2012, which we're all excited about. More about that in months to come.)

The screenings on Saturday, Oct. 16, which have a Halloween flavor to them, are in the library's classic downstairs auditorium. They're free and open to the public and will run from 1:30 to 5 p.m. All films will be shown from 16mm prints.

Dave has put together a quick schedule, which I'm copying and pasting below. I'll do live music for the silents. Hope to see you there. Oh, and the chapter's business meeting will take place afterwards at Lala's Hungarian Restaurant not far away on Elm Street. Hope to see you there, too!

The program will consist of memorable cartoons and comedy shorts featuring Laurel and Hardy, Buster Keaton, Betty Boop and two stars from this area: Walter Long, who was born in Milford, NH, and Thelma Todd who hailed from Lawrence, Massachusetts. The films will be shown in beautiful 16mm prints on a real projector. Both silent and sound movies will be shown. Silent titles will be screened with keyboard accompaniment by local composer Jeff Rapsis. A fun time is guaranteed for all.

Film Program:

BIMBO'S INITIATION (Fleischer-Paramount; 7-24-1931); Dir. by Dave Fleischer. Betty Boop Series. Bimbo the dog is initiated into a secret society in a sadistic 'fun house'; then Betty Boop (with dog's ears) takes a hand. 10 min.; Sound; B&W.

DO DETECTIVES THINK? (Roach-Pathé; 11-20-1927); Dir. by Fred Guiol. Cast: Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, James Finlayson, Noah Young, Viola Richard and Frank Brownlee. An escaped convict is out to kill Judge Foozle (Finlayson) who sentenced him to hang. Two inept detectives (Laurel and Hardy) are hired to guard the judge and his wife. 20 min.; Silent with live accompaniment; B&W.

THE LIVE GHOST (Roach-MGM; 12-8-1934); Dir. by Charley Rogers. Cast: Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Walter Long, Charlie Hall, Arthur Housman and Mae Busch. A gruff sea captain is having trouble manning his ship because of rumors it's haunted. He inveigles Stanley and Oliver into helping him shanghai a crew from the sailors at a dockside bar. Once aboard, the captain warns them that whoever says the word "ghost" will get his head twisted from north to south. At sea, one of the drunken sailors falls into a trough of whitewash, terrorizing Stanley and Oliver into blurting out "ghost" in front of the enraged captain. 20 min.; Sound; B&W.

THE SCARECROW (Metro Pictures; 12-22-1920); Dir. by Eddie Cline and Buster Keaton. Cast: Buster Keaton, Joe Roberts, Sybil Seely, Al St. John, Joe Keaton and Luke the Dog. Farmhands Keaton and Roberts share a cottage full of mechanical devices for making life easy. They are rivals for the farmer's daughter. Keaton , disguised as a scarecrow, causes troubles for his rival and the farmer. When Keaton stoops to tie his shoe, the girl accepts what she thinks is his kneeling proposal. 20 min.; Silent with live accompaniment; B&W.

SEAL SKINS (Roach-MGM; 2-6-1932); Dir. by Morey Lightfoot and Gil Pratt. Cast: ZaSu Pitts, Thelma Todd, Billy Gilbert, Charlie Hall and Leo Willis. An old dark house comedy in which the Girls are chasing a stolen "seal" and a big story for the local news. 20 min.; Sound; B&W.


PETER PAN HANDLED (Standard-F.B.O.; 4-26-1925); Dir. by Walter Lantz. Dinky-Doodle series. A turn on the Peter Pan tale with a combination of live action and animation. 10 min.; Silent with live accompaniment; B&W.

PUBLIC GHOST Nº 1 (Roach-MGM; 12-14-1935); Dir. by Harold Law. Cast: Charley Chase, Joyce Compton, Edwin Maxwell, Clarence Wilson and Harry Bowen. Charley Chase is an inventor who is hired to haunt a house. 20 min.; Sound; B&W.

LIBERTY (Roach-MGM; 1-26-1929); Dir. by Leo McCarey and Stan Laurel. Cast: Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, James Finlayson, Sam Lufkin, Tom Kennedy and Harry Bernard. Two escaped convicts (Laurel & Hardy) change clothes in the getaway car, but wind up wearing each other's pants. The rest of the film involves their trying to exchange pants, in alleys, in cabs and finally high above the street on the girders of a construction site. 20 min.; Silent with live accompaniment; B&W.

HOT MONEY (Roach-MGM; 11-16-1935); Dir. by James W. Horne. Cast: Thelma Todd, Patsy Kelly, James Burke and Fred Kelsey. A thief on the run dumps some hot money in Thelma and Patsy's lap. Shortly thereafter, his untimely demise turns the story into a murder mystery. 20 min.; Sound; B&W.

TECHNO-CRAZY (Educational-Fox; 3-12-1933); Dir. by Charles Lamont. Cast: Monte Collins, Billy Bevan, Eleanor Hunt and John T. Murray. A weird tale of technological utopia, Bolshevism and love set in the demented mind of Monte Collins. 20 min.; Sound; B&W.


For further info please contact:
Dave Stevenson e-mail:

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