To Save and Project


By May Zhee Lim, Markets Media Life Correspondent

If you believe they don’t make movies like they used to, you will not want to miss MoMA’s International Festival of Film Preservation. This month-long festival screens newly preserved films, some of which go back to the 1920s, in meticulously restored editions. The lineup of filmmakers includes greats like Charlie Chaplin, Orson Welles, Sergio Leone, and more contemporary guest presenters like Kathyrn Bigelow and Ken Jacobs.

The festival is showing some of the rarest masterpieces and rediscoveries from film archives, studios, and foundations around the world. Many of the films are screening for the first time in America since their original release, and some are receiving their first public screening ever in the city. The public gets to glimpse sequences filmed by Orson Welles in the 1938 production of Too Much Johnson but not used in the final cut.

Allan Dwan’s 1929 adventure film The Iron Mask has only been screened as a silent film, but through MoMA’s restoration efforts, the latest version now contains the entire original soundtrack. At the festival, the film’s music, sound effects, and three spoken sequences will be heard for the first time since the film’s original road show presentation. Another highlight is the restoration of To the Last Man, which features a rare early appearance by Shirley Temple.

The festival is a tribute to the amazing and painstaking work that’s being undertaken by MoMA and other organizations around the world to revive and rediscover films of the past, a lot of which have been forgotten by movie goers today.

The complete schedule of film screenings can be found on MoMA’s  website.

Photo via MoMa

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