Tuesday, February 28, 2012
A classic restored
The first time I saw Marcel Carne's Children of Paradise -- many years ago, can't remember when -- was at the Nickelodeon Theatre, and it was at the time a typically enthralling and frustrating experience. It's a big, beautiful, moving story of life in the theater, and I loved watching it, but it was an old print, and the subtitles were just awful: white letters completely lost against a white background of any kind. I particularly remember shots of the actor Marcel Herrand, whose dialogue faded into his cumberbund. (This was a constant problem with all foreign films back then, even relatively recent ones. It took years before anyone figured out how to make readable subtitles, either through boxing them in a dark background or using a different font style.)
I've since seen this movie several times, but this sepia-toned trailer looks like a real revelation. I hope I get a chance to see it on the big screen again.