THE THIEF OF BAGDAD
introduced by Tracey Goessel
Sunday, December 6
Both shows introduced by Tracey Goessel, author of the new book The First King of Hollywood: The Life of Douglas Fairbanks (Chicago Review Press), available at our concession today. Ms. Goessel will sign books in the lobby following the screening.
(1924, Raoul Walsh) “Happiness Must Be Earned.” A festival of wonders, as Douglas Fairbanks’ thief encounters a flying horse, the Caverns of Fire, The Valleys of Monsters, the Flight of a Thousand Stairs, and the screen’s first convincing magic carpet (suspended from a 90-foot-high crane by piano wires), amidst Menzies’ still-spectacular sets. Scores of pen-and-ink drawings were made to augment his oversized color boards, with the whole thing in sketch form before filming began. Orson Welles, who saw it as a boy, said “I’ll never forget it.” This restoration features a magnificent orchestral score by Carl Davis (Napoleon). DCP. Approx 155 min.
“A DREAM, A COMIC STRIP, A PREDICTION OF FUTURE ENTERTAINMENT TECH…With its picturebook archways and spiraling minarets, its Baghdad's walls as lightly sunny as lemon cake, Raoul Walsh's jolly Orientalist epic still stands as a miracle of production design.”
– Alan Scherstuhl, Village Voice