“Paths to Paradise,” the program guide for the fourth Film Society screening explains, “was one of the last pictures and best comedies to star Raymond Griffith before the advent of sound pictures. The silent films had developed an elaborate tradition of pantomime comedy which was uniquely American and uniquely cinematographic. The leading individual exponents besides Chaplin were Buster Keaton, Harry Langdon, and Raymond Griffith. With the advent of sound Griffith was no longer to be seen on the screen. The technique of Keaton and Langdon, if not lost in the talkies, is at least regrettably diluted.” In Paths to Paradise—thought lost for years and still missing its final reel—Griffith plays a con-man who beats a fellow swindler at her own game, but later teams up with her for a jewel heist. Shown alongside it was the tropical nature documentary The Nesting of the Sea Turtle, codirected by the great cinematographer Floyd Crosby, whose collaborators would range from F. W. Murnau to Roger Corman.
Paths to Paradise. 1925. USA. Directed by Clarence G. Badger. Screenplay by Keene Thompson, based on the play by Paul Armstrong. With Raymond Griffith, Betty Compson. 35mm. 65 min.
Print courtesy of The Library of Congress
The Nesting of the Sea Turtle. 1933. USA. Directed by Floyd Crosby, Robert Ferguson. DCP. 12 min.