Friday 31 August 2007

Character Studies (1927) Anon

This is a fascinating little piece, though hardly a real film as we would usually see it today. It's a six minute fake impressionist piece, made by mimic Carter DeHaven for a party hosted by Hollywood's greatest couple of the time, Douglas Fairbanks and Mary Pickford. Apparently through application of costume and makeup, though naturally through the magic of cinema and a little bit of clever editing, DeHaven transforms himself into a number of what are credited as the world's greatest screen stars. Given who he chooses, I have no argument with that.

He progresses through Buster Keaton, Harold Lloyd, Fatty Arbuckle (during his period of forced screen absence), Rudolph Valentino, Douglas Fairbanks himself and finally Jackie Coogan, all 13 years of him, which would be no small feat bu There's not much here for the average viewer, except six minutes easily spent on a curiosity. Nowadays it would be a YouTube video constructed by someone with a talent for mashups. Back in 1925 when it was made (1927 was its commercial release), it's easy to see it being a riot at that party.

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