I would be able to conceive a melodrama so stripped of all the conventions ordinarily attached to the genre [and] so sober it might approach the nobility and excellence of tragedy. -- Jean Epstein
An unwelcome suitor threatens the love affair of Jean and Marie. Operating in full melodrama mode, Jean Epstein’s first masterpiece liberally uses close-ups and circular shots on a merry-go-round to focus on Marie’s shifting emotional reactions. 1923, 35mm, 84 minutes.
Following the screening, join Tom Gunning, an Edwin A. and Betty L. Bergman Distinguished Service Professor, department of art history, department of cinema and media studies at the University of Chicago. He will present a lecture titled “Ghostly Ontologies: The Haunted Image in Friedrich Murnau and Jean Epstein.” Gunning works on problems of film style and interpretation, film history, and film culture. His published work has concentrated on early cinema, from its origins to World War I; the culture of modernity from which cinema arose, relating it to still photography, stage melodrama, magic lantern shows; and wider cultural concerns such as the tracking of criminals, the World Expositions, and spiritualism.