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Welcome San Francisco Movie Makers (1960)

Preserved by the San Francisco Media Archive with NFPF support.

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Articles tagged streaming video

Artist’s Spotlight: Cornelia Chapin

Cornelia Chapin at work on her prize-winning sculpture Young Elephant.

For Women’s History Month the NFPF is calling attention to the home movies of Cornelia Van Auken Chapin (1893–1972), preserved through an NFPF grant by the Archives of American Art, a unit of the Smithsonian Institution

Cornelia Chapin was a sculptor who specialized in creating stone and wood sculptures of animals through the direct carving method, which favored sculpting directly from life, without the use of models or casts. Artists in this movement, which rose to prominence after 1915, believed in the “truth of materials”—that a finished work of art should display the inherent properties of the raw material it was sculpted from. Very little period footage of artists engaged in direct carving exists, and during this period there was more documentation of male than female sculptors—these factors make Chapin’s home movies even … Read more

Tags: streaming video, grant film, home movie

Listening to Gordon Parks

Gordon Parks looks back on his life's journey in Listen to a Stranger (1973).

During a month that celebrates the history and accomplishments of African Americans, it’s more than appropriate to highlight Listen to a Stranger: An Interview with Gordon Parks (1973). Preserved through a 2019 NFPF grant by Washington University in St. Louis, this once-rare documentary honors an artist whose work in photography and film were equally groundbreaking.

Gordon Parks (1912–2006) trailblazed with his camera; starting at the Farm Security Administration he became the first African American staff photographer at Life magazine, documenting myriad aspects of American life during the onset of the Civil Rights era. By 1969 he had moved into cinema with The Learning Tree, adapted from his own novel, becoming the first African American to direct a major Hollywood studio feature. His next film was the seminal Blaxploitation … Read more

Tags: streaming video, grant film

Now Online: Harry Carey, Christopher Walken, and Code Blue

Christopher Walken knows many secrets as The Boy Who Saw Through (1958).

The National Film Preservation Foundation wishes you a festive holiday season! Should you wish to celebrate with some eclectic home viewing, take a look at three additions to our Online Screening Room: the urban western Soft Shoes (1925), starring Harry Carey; The Boy Who Saw Through (1958), produced by the legendary animator Mary Ellen Bute and starring a 14-year-old Christopher Walken; and Code Blue (1972), an inspiring recruitment film for minorities in the medical profession, produced by Blackside Inc., the company behind Eyes on the Prize. Taken as a set, these titles testify to the variety of films preserved through our grant program.

Recently rediscovered at the Czech National Film Archive, Soft Shoes is a charming short feature starring Harry Carey as a small-town sheriff who visits San … Read more

Tags: streaming video, grant film, silent film, repatriation

Now Online: Six More Films from the EYE Project

Oliver Hardy menaces Jimmy Aubrey in The Backyard (1920).
A rich mix of fiction and non-fiction films has joined the NFPF website’s screening room. All are freshly preserved products of the NFPF’s ongoing partnership with EYE Filmmuseum in Amsterdam. Unseen since their original release more than 90 years ago, these movies are accompanied by new music from acclaimed silent film accompanists Stephen Horne, Ben Model, and Michael Mortilla, and by program notes from scholars and film experts. The preservation and web presentation of the nonfiction films was made possible through a generous grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Two comedies were preserved under the direction of the Library of Congress and are presented with notes from silent comedy historian Steve Massa. The Backyard (1920) is a Vitagraph studio comedy, featuring a pre-Laurel Oliver Hardy as the villain, set … Read more

Tags: streaming video, EYE Project, repatriation

24 Films Join the NFPF's Online Field Guide to Sponsored Films

Once Upon a Time (1934)

Today the NFPF adds 24 films to its Online Field Guide to Sponsored Films, a free digital screening room that presents entries from The Field Guide to Sponsored Films, written by Rick Prelinger and published by the NFPF in 2006.

These additions bring the total amount of titles to 159. All of the films were commissioned by a host of American businesses, charities, advocacy groups, and governments, and intended to promote commercial products, highlight good works, bring attention to social causes, and explain government programs.

Among the highlights are two drivers’ safety films: Last Date (1950) introduced the word “teenicide” into the English language, while the cartoon Once Upon a Time (1934) features the good fairies “Carefulness” and “Courtesy” preventing car crashes.

Another pair of films praise public libraries: Portrait of a Library (1940) profiles … Read more

Tags: sponsored film, streaming video

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