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Lightbox Film Center
3701 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104
The Lost Moment
It's ironic that the film version of The Aspern Papers by the 19th-century American author Henry James, revered for his naturalism, should be the zenith of Hollywood gothic. In James' story—modeled after the tale of Edward Augustus Silsbee, who attempted to pilfer letters written by Percy Shelley from Mary Shelley's aged stepsister—a nameless American scoundrel bent on a publishing coup tracks the centenarian Juliana Bordereau to a decaying Venetian palazzo. In The Lost Moment, the scoundrel is an unscrupulous New York publisher (Robert Cummings), who plots to acquire Jeffrey Ashton's love letters to his withered muse (Agnes Moorehead) even if it requires wooing the tedious great-niece, Miss Tina (Susan Hayward). Hal Mohr's sinuous travelling camera snakes through the crypt-like mansion hand in hand with Daniele Amfitheatrof's unearthly musical score.
Martin Gabel, US, 1947, 35mm, 89 min. b/w.
Restored by UCLA Film & Television Archive with funding provided by The Packard Humanities Institute
Moods of the Sea
Subjectivity informs Slavko Vorkapich and John Hoffman’s Moods of the Sea, a lyrical documentary utilizing Felix Mendelssohn’s “Fingal’s Cave” as musical accompaniment. Opening with a view from a cave onto the ocean, the film orchestrates images of a powerful natural environment: giant waves breaking on the shore, cliffs towering above the surf, a gull flying overhead, otters playing in the waves, clouds gathering, the sun setting on the horizon. True to Vorkapich’s interest in montage, the images from the constantly moving camera are cut precisely to the music, and each sequence reaches a rhythmic crescendo with the melody, emphasizing the subjective nature of the camera’s point of view.
Slavko Vorkapich/John Hoffman, US, 1941, 35mm, 10 min. b/w
Restored by UCLA Film & Television Archive with funding provided by the National Film Preservation Foundation
The UCLA Festival of Preservation is Co-Presented by Louis Bluver.