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Napoleon (1927), anyone?

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knitwit45
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Re: Napoleon (1927), anyone?

Postby knitwit45 » March 26th, 2012, 4:16 pm

"If only" is right...Even if I start saving now, I don't think I'd have enough to cover air fare and popcorn.......phooey......

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Rita Hayworth
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Re: Napoleon (1927), anyone?

Postby Rita Hayworth » March 26th, 2012, 4:57 pm

knitwit45 wrote:"If only" is right...Even if I start saving now, I don't think I'd have enough to cover air fare and popcorn.......phooey......


Same here ... There is no way I can do this either ... My only hope is that it will come out in DVD format ... but in reality the big screen is 1000% better!!! ... So phooey on me too!

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Lzcutter
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Re: Napoleon (1927), anyone?

Postby Lzcutter » March 26th, 2012, 11:16 pm

It was pouring rain but that didn't keep film buffs from around the country and around the world from descending on the movie palace, the Paramount, in Oakland day before yesterday.

The Paramount was lovingly restored about 25 years ago according to MoraldoRubini. As we entered, we saw the Countessdelave and her friend, Cheryl, just a few steps ahead of us. Inside the interior is gold and green with all the small touches you associate with movie palaces. Being film buffs, Dennis and I both knew we had to check out the downstairs and the restrooms. The ladies room was done in lavendar and grey with a large powder room to boot.

During the first intermission, we went downstairs to get a drink and ran into Leonard Maltin who was standing in a long line for the men's room. We also saw actor James Karen and director Alexander Payne.

We expected Kevin Brownlow to say a few words before the film started but not this time. Carl Davis cued the orchestra and the film began exactly on time. At the two hour mark, there was the first intermission. The line to the ladies room (as well as the one Leonard Maltin stood in for the men's room) was longer than the drink line.

After the intermission, the film began again for another ninety minutes before giving us a break for dinner.

We hurried down Broadway in the rain to Pican restaurant where we had reservations. We had a marvelous Southern dinner and a yummy bottle of wine. The dinner break was 1 hour and 45 minutes and we got back to the theater with just moments to spare.

As the party sequence played out across the screen, the party goers all looked and behaved like refugees from a Cecil B. DeMille or Von Stroheim orgy with flashes of bare breasts, panties and legs all over the screen.

There was one more intermission before the final part of the film. We saw Kevin Brownlow about two rows in front of us. He looked very happy.

When the screen opened up to accommodate the trypdich, it was to thunderous applause. By the time the film came to an end, we were all on our feet applauding loudly for Carl Davis and the East Bay Symphony as well as Kevin Brownlow and Abel Gance.

The film was extraordinary. For much of the film, Gance's Napoleon is very passive. But I think the reason Gance did that was so that when Napoleon reacted or actually instigated action, you as an audience member was very moved by his actions.

Some of the imagery was incredible. At one point there were three panels of images x four across for 12 (what we would call thumbnails today) images on a single screen filled with frentic cutting.

Tyrone Power's wife, Annabelle (all of 16) was in the film. That was a surprise.

And the ending with the three panels ala Cinerama was just incredible.

There were shots that you could draw a straight line from this film to Reds and Last of the Mohicans (Michael Mann version) and could see DW Griffith's influence on Gance.

And every time the orchestra played the French national anthem, I expected Victor Lazlo to show up. Call me crazy.
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feaito

Re: Napoleon (1927), anyone?

Postby feaito » March 27th, 2012, 2:29 pm

Thanks for sharing your unforgettable experience with us dear Lynn. I can only imagine the emotion of witnessing such a premiere...

Countessdelave
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Re: Napoleon (1927), anyone?

Postby Countessdelave » March 29th, 2012, 12:17 am

Lynn,

Thanks for posting your thoughts and reactions to Napoleon. As one who was sitting next to you, I, too, experienced so many of the same things. It was thrilling to be in one of the most gorgeous Art Deco movie palaces in the world: the Paramount Theatre. The film, albeit 5 1/2 hours long, never was boring to me. If I watched it on tv, some of it would have been. This is a film that is meant to be seen on the big screen(s). The effects are breathtaking. I felt so fortunate that Napoleon was playing so close to home. Strangely enough, the second weekend (upcoming) is not sold out. I do hope that folks will try to make it if they can-it's so worth it.

feaito

Re: Napoleon (1927), anyone?

Postby feaito » March 29th, 2012, 10:19 am

It's good to have you here Countessdelave. Welcome to SSO, the best haven in the net for Classic Movie Buffs! :D

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Re: Napoleon (1927), anyone?

Postby movieman1957 » March 29th, 2012, 7:52 pm

"Countessdelave" is a great addition to our gang Fernando. She has won several of the Programming Challenges over at TCM. That makes at least 3 here. (Lynn and I have also won. Lynn was a two time winner.)
Chris

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feaito

Re: Napoleon (1927), anyone?

Postby feaito » March 29th, 2012, 7:58 pm

I did not know that Chris, thanks for that piece of info. I very, very seldom visit TCM city.

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Rita Hayworth
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Re: Napoleon (1927), anyone?

Postby Rita Hayworth » March 29th, 2012, 8:42 pm

feaito wrote:Thanks for sharing your unforgettable experience with us dear Lynn. I can only imagine the emotion of witnessing such a premiere...


I wholeheartedly agree with you feaito ... Lynn did a magnificent job recapping it.

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Sue Sue Applegate
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Re: Napoleon (1927), anyone?

Postby Sue Sue Applegate » April 3rd, 2012, 2:56 pm

Wonderful posts about Napoleon, Lynn!
Countess, so happy to have you aboard!
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Re: Napoleon (1927), anyone?

Postby CineMaven » April 7th, 2012, 9:36 am

Reading folks' accounts on viewing Gance's "NAPOLEAN" have been a great read. Here is one more account of this once-in-a-lifetime-experience. And in the age of CGI's and MTV- reality show "acting", "NAPOLEAN" indeed sounds like a triumph of filmmaking:

http://alankrode.com/public2/index.php/ ... n-napoleon
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