Iconic star of the silent era – Louise Brooks – lights up the role of Lucienne, a spirited, carefree, working woman who enters a beauty contest and is introduced to the alluring world of fame and the freedom it affords. Chafing under the disapproval of her idealistic but controlling boyfriend she is torn between the tantalising glimpse of glamour and a life of domesticity.
Based on a story by René Clair and G.W. Pabst the film was released as a talkie but this HippFest presentation is of the glorious, beautifully restored silent version, which eschews some crude pasted-on sound effects and awkwardly post-synched dialogue scenes, and lets the stunning cinematography and Brooks’ electric performance shine for themselves.
Brace yourself for the devastating finale, deftly handled by Stephen Horne’s brilliant score.
Dir.: Augusto Genina | France | 1930 | N/C PG | 1h 54m | Italian intertitles with English surtitles
With Louise Brooks, Georges Charlia, Jean Bradin, Augusto Bandini
Music accompaniment: score composed and performed by Stephen Horne
Recording commissioned by Film Podium Zurich with additional thanks to Gary Hobish (San Francisco Silent Film Festival) and Thomas Gladysz (Louise Brooks Society)
Screening material courtesy of Cineteca del Comune di Bologna
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