By Marilyn Freund
There are only three certainties in life: death, taxes, and cats on the internet. People love cat videos, and if you have any doubt about the universal truth of that, let me throw a few numbers at you, based on my admittedly cursory research. Continue reading
By C.J. Hirschfield
Martin Luther King, Jr. famously said that “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.”
In Oakland, a remarkable woman warrior for social justice has worked hard–and successfully– to bend that arc over a ten-year period, and a new documentary reminds us just how powerful one passionate person can be.
Part Two- What I Will Be Seeing
By Meredith Brody
May 4, 2022
I learned my lesson early with the San Francisco Silent Film Festival: GO TO EVERYTHING.
The first year I attended, I cherry-picked only the movies I hadn’t seen before. The ones I went to were such a revelation – both in the presentation and the group experience – that my heart hurt as I walked away. What a MAROON I was. Even a movie I thought I knew well would be a fresh experience, featuring as it did not only live music, but one of the world’s great audiences. There’s a kind of euphoria that sets in when you commit to seeing everything on offer. Continue reading
Curated by Gary Meyer
May 4, 2022 (updated May 6)
As the 25th San Francisco Silent Film Festival starts Thursday, May 5 and plays for a full week, we have gathered a collection of trailers, clips, rare posters and other ephemera from many of the films showing at this year’s celebration. The Festival partners with archives around the world to restore films. At the Festival there will be restored prints (looking better than many of these excerpts) and all are accompanied by live music. Silents does not mean “Silence.” In fact the proper enjoyment of silent movies include great musical accompaniment. The Festival features both local and international musicians. Sound is so important that they bring in their own sound system and technicians as the Castro doesn’t have great acoustics (something being corrected by the new operators).
We are getting ready for an unforgettable week.
An excerpt from Dana Stevens’ “CAMERA MAN”
In this genre-defying work of cultural history, the chief film critic of Slate places comedy legend and acclaimed filmmaker Buster Keaton’s unique creative genius in the context of his time.
Keaton’s STEAMBOAT BILL JR. with live musical accompaniment by the Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra will screen at the 25th San Francisco Silent Film Festival on Saturday, May 7 at 3pm at the Castro Theater. Dana Stevens will introduce the showing. Information and tickets here.
Stevens will also appear in conversation with writer David Thomson at the Bay Area Book Festival on Sunday, May 8 at 3:30. It will be both in-person and live streamed. Info here.
Part One: Not Feeling Festive
By Meredith Brody
May 3, 2022
The pandemic disrupted virtually (pun unintended, but hiya, Dr. Freud!) every aspect of my life, but none more thoroughly or dismayingly than the one that contributed most of its bliss, excitement, and travel (not to mention remuneration, once I’d written about them): attending film festivals.