<i>Broken Blossoms.</i> 1919. USA. Directed by D. W. Griffith

D. W. Griffith on a Smaller Canvas

Musical accompaniment by Ben Model

Thursday, January 7, 2010, 1:30 p.m.

Theater 3 (The Celeste Bartos Theater), mezzanine, The Lewis B. and Dorothy Cullman Education and Research Building

Includes the following films:

  • True Heart Susie

    1919. USA. Directed by D. W. Griffith. With Lillian Gish, Robert Harron, Clarine Seymour. In the best of his several “rural romances,” the director reflects on his Kentucky boyhood (this time without the racial elements) and returns to the simplicity of his filmic roots at Biograph. Silent. Approx. 65 min.

  • Broken Blossoms

    1919. USA. Directed by D. W. Griffith. Based on the story “The Chink and the Child,” by Thomas Burke. With Lillian Gish, Richard Barthelmess, Donald Crisp. The film’s sensitive portrayal of romance between Gish and Barthelmess’s “Yellow Man” leads inexorably toward one of the most terrifying scenes in cinema history. Silent. Approx. 65 min.

After the massive scope of The Birth of a Nation, Intolerance, and his World War I epic Hearts of the World, Griffith wisely narrowed his ambitions, and his realization that conveying monumental emotions did not require grandiosity and a cast of thousands led to some of his most memorable films. Most of these smaller masterpieces starred Lillian Gish, the preeminent actress of the silent era.

In the Film exhibition An Auteurist History of Film

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