Sunday, July 13, 2008

The Unknown

Above: Me and my friend Donna hanging out and talking Joan.

The Silent Film Festival came rolling into San Francisco this past weekend. I thoroughly enjoy silent films and discovering films that I normally would never watch. I was extremely excited about this year’s silent film festival because the feature film for the festival was an early film Joan Crawford stared in called "The Unknown." Joan Crawford was only 21 years old when this film was released in 1927 and she was co-starring with one of the greatest silent film actors of all time, Lon Chaney. The film is probably one of the best silent films ever showcasing Lon Chaney's amazing silent acting skills, a bizarre story line and a fresh-faced almost unrecognizable Joan Crawford only two years into her acting career. As we all know, Crawford became one of the most successful actresses of all time having a career that spanned six decades and wining an Academy Award.

Above: The beautiful poster that promoted The Silent Film Festival. Thanks Scott!

Above: The famous Castro Theatre marquee.

Above: One of the slides that appeared on the BIG SCREEN at the Castro Theater
- notice the plug to my website!! :-)


Prior to watching "The Unknown," I met up with new friend, David who reviewed my collection last week and Scott who I worked with on the Joan Crawford essay that was being shown before the filming of "The Unknown." We all connect so well on many levels and enjoyed a few beers at the famous "Harvey's" in the Castro. We then headed over to the Theater to watch "The Man Who Laughs." This silent film was being shown before "The Unknown" and I was excited to see this interesting tale about a man who was branded with a permanent smile on his face as a young boy and had to go through life begin ridiculed for having this large, toothy smile. The film was brilliant and was the inspiration for the Batman comic book and film character The Joker.

Above: This is a great slide showing the inspiration for the Batman villan, The Joker.

Above" David, Scott and me at the Castro Theatre - Looks like I lost a few buttons!

After watching "The Man Who Laughs, " I gathered up Paul, friends and many Joan fans to watch "The Unknown" (many seeing it for the first time). I am always glad to have Paul with me at a film event because it's exposing him to something I enjoy and 9 out of 10 times, Paul truly enjoys the films I share with him. Paul really enjoyed "The Unknown." My online Joan friend, Donna, flew into SF earlier in the week to come see this film with her friend Karen. This is the second time Donna has come to SF to watch Joan on the big screen with me and it's always a treat. We were all kiddy and happy to be reunited once again.

Above: Me outside the Castro Theater.

Earlier in the week on Friday night I had Donna and Karen over my apartment to view my Joan Crawford collection. I have been showing the collection pretty much on a weekly basis to people in the SF area and it's not only been wonderful sharing the collection with other fans but I have been making some great new friends. I was super excited to share it with my friend Donna because we both share the passion, both have Joan Crawford Websites and we talk online on a weekly basis. After two hours of looking at the collection Donna's friend, whose not a Joan fan but respects her acting and enjoyed the collection, was at her Joan limit and rightfully so. Donna and I could have reviewed the collection all night.

Above: Me and Donna lookign at my Joan Crawford collection.

It's funny how you meet people through different mediums. I have a great group of friends back in Boston I met through Paul and here in SF we have a great group of friends we met through softball and now I am making a whole new level of friends through my love of old films and Joan. It's crazy how certain people come in and out of your life, but I believe people come into your life for a reason. I am surrounded my some truly amazing people that I am thankful to know and call friends. I am truly enjoying meeting new people!

Above: Joan friend Darwin, me and Paul sharing a few drinks after the movie.

Above: Scott, Donna and Karen talking about Joan and Judy.

3 comments:

Patrick Lentz Photography said...

Looks like fun! Was the movie really good?

Menky said...

The movie was a blast!! I have seen it before and it's also available on DVD, but seeign an early film like that with or wothout Joan in it just makes you apprecaite these silents even more andf the talents actors were in that era. Wish you were there Patrick!

KArl said...

I went to this film the same night at the Castro! It was a wonderful evening!