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San Francisco Silent Film Festival, May 1 – May 5

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, April 22, 2019 02:50pm | Post a Comment

The 24th San Francisco Silent Film Festival (SFSFF) runs May 1st – May 5th at the historic Castro Theatre! This year's festival features 25 programs (including an illustrated lecture presentation at the Pacific Film Archive in Berkeley), all with live musical accompaniment! There are films from ten different countries — Bali (Goona Goona), Czechoslovakia (Tonka of the Gallows), France (L’Homme Du Large), Germany (The Oyster Princess, Opium, The Love of Jeanne Ney), India (Shiraz: A Romance of India), Italy (Rapsodia Satanica, L'Inferno), Japan (Japanese Girls at the Harbor), Sweden (Sir Arne's Treasure), U.S. (Wolf Song, Husbands and Lovers, Lights of Old Broadway, Hell Bent, The Wedding March, and more), and the USSR (Earth) — and more than 40 brilliant musicians from around the world to accompany the films. Bookended by Buster Keaton classics The Cameraman (1928) and Our Hospitality (1923), the film selection has something for everyone, including melodrama, horror, adventure, westerns, and even Nordic noir.

All films at SFSFF are accompanied with live music by extraordinary musicians including Club Foot Gamelan, Frank Bockius, Guenter Buchwald, Stephen Horne, Sascha Jacobsen, Matti Bye Ensemble, Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra, Philip Carli, Wayne Barker, Utsav Lal, and Donald Sosin.

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San Francisco Silent Film Festival Presents Greatest Hits with Club Foot Orchestra, 9/15

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, September 2, 2018 07:59pm | Post a Comment

San Francisco Silent Film Festival (SFSFF) presents a silent movie blockbuster day at the Castro Club Foot Orchestra. Photo by AnneHamersky.Theatre on Saturday, September 15th. With four programs of favorites from the silent era all accompanied live by the legendary Club Foot Orchestra, this is an event you just can't miss!

Founded in 1983 by Richard Marriott, Club Foot Orchestra (named after a nightclub in San Francisco's Bayview) was a pioneer in creating modern music for silent film. Their accompaniment is thoughtful and expressive, showing respect and engagement in the images they compose for. On September 15th, Club Foot provides the live accompaniment for four films in one epic day. The day starts out at 1pm with the sublime Buster Keaton and the mischievous Felix the Cat (Buster + Felix) and then veers into the world of German Expressionism with three masterpieces — The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari at 3:15, Metropolis at 6pm, and Nosferatu at 9:30pm.

Join Club Foot for this musical journey into the genius of silent cinema. Get an all-day pass or buy tickets to individual screenings HERE.

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The San Francisco International Film Festival, 4/19 - 5/3

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, March 27, 2012 05:15pm | Post a Comment
San Francisco International Film Fest Castro

The San Francisco International Film Festival returns From April 19th – May 3rd for two weeks of cinematic discovery. The International assembles world-renowned talent—such as awardees KennethThe Love Song of R. Buckminster Fuller Branagh, Barbara Kopple, and Pierre Rissient—for Bay Area audiences.

This year's innovative events include Academy Award nominee Sam Green's latest live documentary project The Love Song of R. Buckminster Fuller with live music by Yo La Tengo (5/1 at SFMoma), Merrill Garbus (tUnE-yArDs) with Buster Keaton shorts (4/23 at Castro Theatre), and so much more!

For a complete guide to films, venues, and tickets, visit festival.sffs.org, but here are a few more that we are excited about!
 
Bernie (Richard Linklater, USA, 2011)
Explaining the proper methods to superglue eyelids closed and adjust a corpse’s smile, Bernie Tiede Richard Linklater Bernie Jack Black(Jack Black) warns, “You cannot have grief tragically becoming comedy.” But can it be funny when someone dies and no one cares? A former evangelist who arrives in Carthage, Texas to take a job as an assistant funeral director, Tiede uses his magnetic personality, seemingly never-ending skill set and Harold Hill–style of confidence to become the most popular man in town. Tiede even manages to charm Marjorie Nugent (a maniacally frenzied Shirley MacLaine), the local rich widow whom everyone else despises and fears. Eventually, though, Nugent’s abuses become too much for someone in Carthage to take. Director Richard Linklater returns to the East Texas of his youth to showcase the strange heart of small town life, where, as one character puts it, “people will always suspect the worst, but they’ll also suspect the best.” Saturday, April 21, Sundance Kabuki Cinemas.

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California Fool's Gold -- Exploring Wilshire Park, Los Angeles's "Not Koreatown"

Posted by Eric Brightwell, October 8, 2009 08:32pm | Post a Comment

This installment of the Los Angeles Neighborhood Blog concerns Wilshire Park. Vote here to vote in the Neighborhoods of Los Angeles Blog Poll (NLABP) and/or here for the Los Angeles County Community Blog Poll (LACCBP). To vote for Orange County neighborhoods, vote here.

  
Pendersleigh & Sons' Official Maps of Midtown and Wilshire Park

Wilshire Park is a small, Midtown  neighborhood whose borders are Olympic Blvd on the south, Crenshaw Blvd on the west, Wilshire Blvd on the north and Wilton Place on the east. Its desirable, central location and quaint charm has lead to various parties attempting to claim it for their benefit. Some residential realtors have extended the traditional use of the term “Westside” to the neighborhood, hoping to attach that area’s mostly white and affluent connotations to the neighborhood. Commercial interests have occasionally led to it being described as part of neighboring Koreatown, presumably with an eye on extending the bustling commercial center into the quiet neighborhood.
 
Wilshire Blvd suddenly gets quiet in Wilshire Park
Wilshire Park is almost completely residential. When entering the neighborhood from Koreatown to the east, one notices an almost complete halt in the Hangul signs, BBQ aroma and crowded shopping centers which immediately give way to several nondescript apartments and only a couple of equally nondescript businesses.

An attractive row of typical Wilshire Park homes
The bulk of the neighborhood is made up of a variety of architectural styles including American Craftsman, California Bungalow, Colonial Revival, Dutch Colonial, Mediterranean, Spanish Colonial and Victorian-Craftsman Transitional styles. The first home built in the neighborhood was in 1908 and most of the rest were built between the ‘10s and ‘30s. A number are listed as Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Landmarks.

      
Although a few Wilshire Park residents have accepted the realities of California and thus xeriscaped their lawns, many of the homeowners attempted to transplant the appearance of where they’d come from to the area and a large number of the homes still feature rose gardens and lush, green lawns. If not for the palm trees, the large magnolias and oaks, the sycamore-shaded neighborhood could pass for somewhere in the Middle West.

   
              Doris Eaton                                            Helen Lee Worthing                                              Mildred Harris

Much of the neighborhood looks much as it must’ve in the silent film era, when it was home to many stars. Doris Eaton, Helen Lee Worthing, and Mildred Harris all lived there. In 1925, a chase scene in the Buster Keaton film, Seven Chances, took place at Olympic and Bronson.

   
Situated three miles south of downtown Hollywood and five miles west of downtown Los Angeles, the Mid-Wilshire area was in a prime position in the 1930s and it was at the peak of its association with the film industry, leading to the area being known as “The Upper East Side of the West Coast.” The Ambassador Hotel, the Brown Derby, the Cocoanut Grove club, Perino's and the Wiltern Theater were/are attractions which no doubt contributed to the association.

     
              Harry James                                Louise Tobin                         Joseph L. Mankiewicz                   Jules Dassin

In the pre-war era, the neighborhood was also home to bandleader Harry James and his wife, singer Louise Tobin, lived there as well as violinist Jan Rubini and screenwriter Joseph L. Mankiewicz. Following World War II, the southland population largely moved to the suburbs. In the 1940s and '50s, though most of the Hollywood crowd had moved away from the city center, Wilshire Park was still home to several notables. Don McLaughlin, star of old time radio program Counterspy lived on Norton Avenue. Screenwriter/director Jules Dassin lived on Bronson.
 

In the 1960s, The Douglas Family house in My Three Sons was shot there (837 5th Ave). More recently, the neighborhood was a shooting location in Crossing Over.
 
Looking toward Olympic
The sometimes histrionic reaction to being lumped in with Koreatown could lead one to believe that the residents of Wilshire Park are living out their own cozy catastrophe, holding out against the widespread Koreanization of the Wilshire region. However, walking around the neighborhood it seems that a vast majority of the neighborhood's residents and businesses are themselves Korean. Olympic Blvd is Wilshire Park’s main commercial corridor and every business is Korean-owned and targeted, including Arirang, Chung Ki Wa, Kang Nam and many others.
   
                             A Buddhist Temple                                                                  A strange sign
In reality, Koreatown means more than simply Koreans; it means high-density high-rises (it’s the most crowded area in the Southland), LCD JumboTron billboards, traffic, filth and crime. Indeed, the concerns of Wilshire Park residents are hardly unwarranted. The Wilton Place border (where several scenes of 365 Nights In Hollywood were filmed) it shares with Koreatown is noticably more litter-strewn and nearly every crime in the neighborhood (mostly burglaries) takes place within a block of the street. For more on the neighborhood, go to the Wilshire Park Association's website or check their twitter page.



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