Flicker Alley has impressed me yet again with the announcement of their Blu-Ray/DVD combo entitled We’re In The Movies: Palace of Silents and Itinerant Filmmaking. The two-fer release includes the 2010 documentary Palace of Silents: The Silent Movie Theater in Los Angeles and the 1983 documentary When You Wore a Tulip and I Wore a Big Red Rose. Slated for release on July 22nd, the combo also includes 5 bonus movies from itinerant and local filmmakers.
From Flicker Alley:
“Palace of Silents: The Silent Movie Theatre in Los Angeles (2010)
On Fairfax Avenue in Los Angeles there is a 150-seat movie theater that for over sixty-eight years has doggedly dedicated itself to the exhibition of silent films. Built in 1942 by maverick film preservationist and collector John Hampton, the theater championed silent film at the very moment when the Hollywood studios across town were busily destroying their nitrate inventories. With hard chairs, phonograph-record accompaniments, and mostly original vintage prints, the dingy mom-and-pop operation was nonetheless a palace to the fanatical few who became its loyal audience. Through the theater’s tumultuous years of operation, its owners and employees have struggled to keep a cherished art form alive, often paying a heavy price in the personal tragedies that have stemmed from this struggle: obscurity, financial ruin, and even murder.
Through interviews, archival footage and detailed research, Palace of Silents reveals the touching, twisted, and bloody history of one independent theater’s successful attempt to stubbornly buck every cinematic trend in the hometown of American cinema.
When You Wore a Tulip and I Wore a Big Red Rose (1983)
In the early 1980s, documentary filmmaker Stephen Schaller was instrumental in the rediscovery and restoration of The Lumberjack (1914), the oldest surviving film made in Wisconsin, and produced by a group of itinerant filmmakers who traveled from town to town making “local talent” pictures. Schaller’s lovely and sometimes deeply emotional, 63-minute journal/essay film offers a look at the making of the Wausau, Wisconsin classic, including interviews with the one surviving cast member and the relatives of others who appeared in the movie. His investigation includes moving remembrances of the people and town of Wausau as it was, and even reveals the on-set accidental death of one of The Lumberjack‘s top cameramen. More than just a piece of local history, When You Wore a Tulip is also of interest to anyone who cares about film history and preservation. Discovering Schaller’s gentle, artful movie is just as exciting as finding a lost family album.”
Be sure to pre-order your copy through the Flicker Alley website, here. Also check out the trailer for the release below.