Friday, November 08, 2013

Nordic meeting of film archives: restoration screenings

Nordic film archives' restoration screenings at Ingebill, Filmens Hus, Oslo, 8 November 2013.

Min Svigerinde fra Amerika / [My Sister-in-Law from America] (DK 1917), PC: Nordisk D: Lau Lauritzen, Sr. - A short comedy of a husband having a meeting with his mistress. The wife arrives unexpectedly, and the husband explains that this is his sister-in-law (his brother's wife) from America. His brother happens to arrive at that very moment from America with his wife, to "gamle Danmark". The guy explains that these are Mormons, "but if more were coming I wouldn't know what to do". Even so, the furies are at large. - AA: Lau Lauritzen at his best. There is a lively mise-en-scène and rapport among the actors in this goofy comedy. - Nice job of making a new print with green colour in favour.

FROM HELSINKI (a sample, 4K DCP, scope)
Sampo. FI/SU 1959. PC: Suomi-Filmi / Mosfilm. D: Alexander Ptushko. Based on the Finnish national epic Kalevala. - A test reel of our new 4K digital restoration, starting with a couple of minutes of footage without colour correction. The new colour looks better than anything of the faded or even newly made prints of the Sovcolor epic. - For Finns the film is a blasphemy, the authentic Kalevala spirit missing. - Having said this, I have to admit that the views of primordial forests are gorgeous. And there is a poetic moment as Louhi sends an enchanted black cloth to Annikki. It turns at once into a black sail to her boat, rushing her to Louhi in the land of Pohjola. - I look forward to the restoration which we plan to screen next year. There will be also a dvd release with many subtitle options based on the new restoration.

Le Coucher de la mariée / Bedtime for the Bride. FR 1896. PC: Joly-Normandin. P: Eugène Pirou. D: Léar (= Albert Kirchner). C: Louise Willy. - "The first sex film" where nothing is seen but everything is anticipated. - The delightful pochoir-coloured version from Stockholm, from the 4-perforation version. This I saw also a month ago in Pordenone in the magnificent Joly-Normandin programme.

Midvinterblot. En filmvision av Gösta Werner / The Sacrifice. SE 1946. D: Gösta Werner. DP: Sten Dahlgren. M: Björn Schildknecht. Rådgivare: Arbman. C: Gunnar Björnstrand. A stark winter vision of a blood sacrifice for the sun from the age of pagan Sweden. Visually intensive, with bold music. The first Swedish digital restoration.

FROM OSLO (a sample)
Mot ukjent land. Norvegia-ekspedisjonen 1929/30 / [Toward an Unknown Land]. NO 1930. D: Hjalmar Riiser-Larsen. The feature-length documentary film of the third of four Norvegia expeditions to the Antarctic to explore whaling areas, with two airplanes on board. The route of the ship is seen in animation. The longest segment of the film is a very detailed account of hunting a blue whale with an exploding harpoon. The value of these documents keeps growing the further removed we are from this period of seamanship. - This restoration is a part of a huge project of identifying a large collection of unidentified nitrate holdings in Norway's film archives in Mo i Rana.

No comments: