Thursday, March 5, 2015

Episode #55 - Jan-Christopher Horak (Her Sister's Secret)

"Our philosophy here is to try to re-create the original look of the film."

Film, both the art and the physical medium, will only survive as long as there are those willing to protect and restore it. This is the job of Dr. Jan-Christopher Horak, a film scholar and head of the archive at the University of California, Los Angeles, which hosts its 16th Festival of Preservation this month. Dr. Horak discusses his route into the archive, from his graduate work uncovering the genre of German exile filmmakers, to his other historical work on the early American avant-garde and recently on Saul Bass. The discussion then goes into the heart of the archive—its history as an institution, its practices (both film and digital), and most importantly, its exhibition to audiences. Finally, the two look at Edgar Ulmer's Her Sister's Secret, a family melodrama that might not contain the usual German expressionism of the director, but subtly breaks patterns of morality against the conventions of Hollywood.

0:00-2:52 Opening
4:18-11:16 Establishing Shots - Abel Ferrara's Pasolini
12:00-1:00:07 Deep Focus - Jan-Christopher Horak
1:03:22-1:14:12  Double Exposure - Her Sister's Secret (Edgar G. Ulmer)
1:14:15-1:15:56 Close 
The UCLA Festival of Preservation Runs March 5th-March 31st at the Billy Wilder Theater in Westwood, Los Angeles. More information here.
Check out Dr. Horak's books The Lovers of Cinema: The First American Avant-Garde 1919-1945 and Saul Bass: Anatomy of Film Design. More information on him can be found at his UCLA home page.
Follow the UCLA Film Archive and Dr. Horak on Twitter.
Her Sister's Sister will play at the Billy Wilder Theater March 14th at 3pm on 35mm. It is also available on Amazon Prime
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Notes and Links from the Conversation
-More on Pasolini from Nick Pinkerton
-Ignatiy Vishnevetsky on Arabian Nights
-Horak on Jonas Mekas and Reminisces on a Journey to Lithuania
-A discussion on Horak's contribution to the Exile Genre
-"The Palm Trees Were Gently Swaying: German Refugees from Hitler In Hollywood"
-UCLA's recent Exile Noir Program, And The Hollywood Exiles In Europe Program
-Horak's book, Film and Photo in the 1920s, is only available in German
-Paul Strand's Manhatta (1921)
-A David Bordwell profile, which contextualizes the 1980s "Film Studies Crisis"
-The Bauhaus Movement
-Poster for The Man With The Golden Arm
-The George Eastman House
-The Association of Moving Image Archivists (AMIA)
-A brief overview of The LA Rebellion
-The Library of Congress on Restoration
-What is Film Restoration?
-Horak discusses restoring the work of African American filmmakers
-Sam Adams reports from AMIA's 2010 conference, where digital restoration centers the debate
-A Cineaste Symposium on the state of the archive
-Horak on digital restoration and film history
-David Bordwell on "Pandora's Digital Box"
-Contact Printing
-Berlin's retrospective on 100 Years of Technicolor
-Information on The Red Shoes restoration
-Highlights from the festival: Horror Films, Silent Fragments, Revisiting LA Rebellion, Playhouse 90
-Scott MacQueen
-Truffaut writes of Ulmer's The Naked Dawn in his collected works.
-Noah Isenberg's Edgar Ulmer Book (And our extensive interview here)
-A clip from the 1937 adaptation, Prison Sans Barreaux

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