when eyeliner was more than essential
i really like silent movies. i saw a lot of them as a kid at the bardavon theater. my dad still helps curate the theater organ there. so i was kind of disappointed when i watched the sheik last night and it was soundtracked by a midi orchestra, which repeated borodin’s in the steppes of central asia four or five times.
still, despite rampant sexism and references to “savages,” i found myself entranced by this movie. it’s a completely different world and it wasn’t even a hundred years ago. rudolph valentino did make the 1920s version of a creeper face more than once. i will say that.
really, though, it’s fascinating how film began so daringly and was suddenly quelled by the inevitable formation of the MPAA in 1922. one year after the sheik was made! movies went from featuring a woman and a man falling in love amidst knife fights and kidnapping to the ban on showing couples in the same BED. yeesh. maybe norma desmond had it right after all.
next up on my netflix queue is the married virgin. i mean, dig that title! in 1918!