Saturday, July 9, 2011
Boyz wilb Boyz
Huckleberry Finn (1920)
Friday July 15, 2pm, The Castro, San Francisco
An old maid adopts motherless Huckleberry Finn to "sivilize" his coarse, free-spirited behavior. Her plans are thwarted when the boy is kidnapped by his father, the abusive town drunk. Huck escapes by faking his own murder and befriends a runaway slave. Their tranquil life of rafting on the river is interrupted by two seedy con-men who sell Jim and involve Huck in fraud, while he masquerades as his best friend Tom Sawyer and falls in love.
Missing the satirical bite and social consciousness of Mark Twain's 1885 novel, director William Desmond Taylor's Huckleberry Finn (1920) displays a sentimental fondness for the story in a production that typifies the consistent quality associated with Taylor and Paramount Pictures. Huckleberry Finn is also noteworthy as the first theatrical film version of the book and for Esther Ralston's oldest surviving performance in a feature film, as the object of Huck's affection Mary Jane Wilkes.
The 16th Annual San Francisco Silent Film Festival and the California Historical Society present William Desmond Taylor's Huckleberry Finn (1920), with live musical accompaniment performed by returning pianist Donald Sosin.