A still from The Lodger, 1927

Hitchcock’s Transition from London to Hollywood

In England, Alfred Hitchcock cultivated a comedic sensibility that shines through in his Hollywood thrillers.
Employees of the Fleischer Studios picket the New Criterion Theater in New York to protest against the showing of Popeye and other cartoons drawn by striking Fleischer artists, 1937.

The Great Animation Strike

Animation workers took to the streets, carrying signs with bleakly humorous slogans. One read: “I make millions laugh but the real joke is our salaries.”
A scene from The Christmas Angel

The Theatrical Magic of The Christmas Angel

The silent film director Georges Melies made a unique and wonderful Christmas film by borrowing the theatrical techniques of French “feeries.”
from The Battle of San Pietro

The War Documentary That Never Was

John Huston's 1945 movie The Battle of San Pietro presents itself as a war documentary, but contains staged scenes. What should we make of it?
Santa Claus Conquers the Martians

How Local TV Made “Bad” Movies a Thing

Weekly shows on local TV stations helped make the ironic viewing of bad movies into a national pastime.
Mary Pickford, 1916

Mary Pickford Knew Not to Take the First Offer

When the 17-year-old actress auditioned for her first film, director D.W. Griffith offered her $5 a day. That wasn’t good enough for Mary.
Meet John Doe

“Meet John Doe” Shows the Darkness of American Democracy

Meet John Doe, Frank Capra’s 1941 drama, carries forward the populist themes of his other movies, only with a much darker premise.
The Lost World (1925) - film poster

The 1925 Dinosaur Movie That Paved the Way for King Kong

During a slow day at work, a young marble cutter named Willis O’Brien began sculpting tiny T-Rex figurines.
A scene from Within Our Gates

How Oscar Micheaux Challenged the Racism of Early Hollywood

The black filmmaker Oscar Micheaux was one of the first to make films for a black audience, a rebuke to racist movies like The Birth of a Nation.
Source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/tom-margie/1558177982

Harold Lloyd’s Death-Defying Comedy

“With comedy, trouble is one of the greatest ingredients because there are so many variations to it,” the silent film actor told one scholar.