A Kiss From Mary Pickford (1927)

Sun 21 March

Film 14:30 (1h 20m)

with music from John Sweeney (piano)

Potselui Meri Pikford

The USSR visit undertaken by Douglas Fairbanks and Mary Pickford in 1926 is spun into this entertaining Soviet satire about tinsel town and stardom.

Mobbed by hordes of adoring fans and legions of camera crew, the King and Queen of Hollywood caused a sensation wherever they went on their good-will tour.  Footage of their trip was used as the cornerstone for this comedy about a cinema usher with an unrequited crush, whose sex appeal is elevated to stratospheric Fairbanks-levels when he is kissed by the visiting megastar.  This genuinely funny comedy affectionately pokes fun at the blight of ‘Americanitis’ afflicting Soviet cinema, and at the audiences who favoured movie escapism over mass education.  Prepare for bitter-sweet belly laughs at the sequence in which our hero attempts to perfect his Zorro-moves, featuring extracts from ‘The Mark of Zorro’ – the film that would have been our Friday Night Gala last March. 

Dir. Sergey Komarov | USSR | 1927 | NC U | b&w | 1h 20m | Russian intertitles with English surtitles.

With: Igor Ilyinsky, Anel Sudakevich, Mary Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks, Vera Malinovskaya, Nikolai Rogozhin, M. Rosenstein, Abram Room, M. Rosenberg, N. Sisova, Y. Lenz, A. Glinsky

Screening material preserved by The Library of Congress

John Sweeney

Programme Notes

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