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Pordenone (Italy) Silent Film Festival

Pordenone/Sacile 6-14 October 2006

The programme of the 25th Giornate del Cinema Muto (Pordenone Silent Film Festival) is one of the most varied in the festival’s history. The central presentation is a tribute to the centenary of Nordisk Film, with works from the golden age of Danish cinema, including classics like Carl Dreyer’s Leaves from Satan’s Book and August Blom’s Atlantis, alongside exciting rediscoveries like Holger-Madsen’s A Trip to Mars.

In tribute to Italian silent cinema, six new restorations from the archives of Bologna, Turin and George Eastman House, Rochester include Turin’s monumental restoration of the two versions of Giovannni Pastrone’s Cabiria, from 1914 and - with sound accompaniment - 1930.

There are special tributes to Lon Chaney, including Benjamin Christensen’s melodrama of the Russian Revolution, Mockery, and to Rudolph Valentino, with a reconstruction of his long-lost The Young Rajah. The centenary of the incomparable Louise Brooks will be celebrated with the screening of the restored silent version of Prix de beauté.

The continuing “Griffith Project” reaches its tenth instalment, culminating in the American master’s 1920 epic Way Down East. Griffith’s contemporary and rival Thomas Ince (last celebrated at the 1984 Giornate) is honoured in a series of programmes of recent discoveries and restorations. Hollywood silent cinema also features prominently in a presentation on “Magic and Cinema,” which offers a rare opportunity to see on screen the greatest 20th century magician, Harry Houdini.
The special musical presentations include Griffith's True Heart Susie; a rare survival from the Chile’s sparse silent cinema, Pedro Sienna’s El Húsar de la Muerte (1925); and the British documentary feature The Battle of the Somme (1916).

Animated films are celebrated in a series of Walt Disney Silly Symphonies, representing an apogee of the wedding of music and image; and a special series of American Pioneers of Animation.
The Giornate’s established associated activities continue in 2006. The Film Fair provides a major market for film books and a meeting place for authors, publishers and readers. The Collegium, centred on 12 young invited students, provides a unique and innovative experiment in film study. The School of Music and Image features master classes on film accompaniment. Special exhibitions are devoted to Italian Silent Cinema and Charles Chaplin.

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