The second edition of the Nederlands Silent Film Festival took place on January 11, 12, 13, 2019. Festival director Daan van den Hurk: ‘The silent film is a special kind of film that by no means can be seen as the primitive predecessor of our contemporary sound film. Telling a story with images alone requires a totally different approach to film making. The themes, longings and humour are of all times, and the film is only complete, as is the experience, with live musical accompaniment, which makes every screening unique.’
Friday January 11, 2019
The festival opens with D.W. Griffith’s majestic, 167 minutes long INTOLERANCE (1916) which deals with the intolerance of men throughout the ages. David Robinson’s lecture is about Buster Keaton, whose films BACK STAGE (1919) and THREE AGES (1923) are shown right after. The latter is Keaton’s comedic answer to INTOLERANCE. We also see the silent film shorts CATHERINE (2018) and EINDHOVEN OPTOCHT (1920).
Saturday January 12, 2019
The afternoon is Dutch: six silent films made in The Netherlands or by Dutch filmmakers are shown: MINIATUREN (2018), NUL UUR NUL (1928), PHILIPS GLASFABRIEKEN (1922), MOLENS (1928), ENTSTEHUNG VON WIRBELN BEI IN WASSER BEWEGTEN KORP (1925) and STRAND (1931).
Elif Rongen gives a lecture about the restoration process of the Russian film FRAGMENT OF AN EMPIRE (1929), which is shown after and is musically accompanied live with the original score by Vladimir Deshevov.
‘Sold out’ is an understatement when it comes to Saturday evening, during Slapstick Saturday. It seems like people flock to comedy like never before. We see Charlie Chaplin’s THE CURE (1917), Charley Chase’s DOG SHY (1926) and Buster Keaton’s COLLEGE (1927).
Sunday January 13, 2019
Daan van den Hurk gives a lecture about the musical accompaniment of film, en gives pianist Ariadne Verstegen and cellist Maaike Peters a public masterclass. There’s an opportunity for the younger generations to get acquainted with silent film in the afternoon, when three films by Laurel & Hardy are shown: BIG BUSINESS (1929), LIBERTY (1929) and WRONG AGAIN (1929). Then it’s time to pull out the handkerchiefs, because of the French tearjerker VISAGES D’ENFANTS (1925), which is preceded by NACHTVLINDER (2018).
The festival closes with BLAUW (2018), N.V. PHILIPS GLOEILAMPENFABRIEKEN (1919), and one of the best adapted Sherlock Holmes stories: DER HUN VON BASKERVILLE (1929).
NSFF 2019 was made possible by EYE Filmmuseum, Lobster, Cultuur Eindhoven, San Francisco Silent Film Festival, Mansveld, The Student Hotel, Pand P, and Zolderkamertjesklassiek.