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“Johnny Guitar”: National Film Registry #20

Joan Crawford, once the queen of the MGM lot,  had one of her very best late-career roles in the film “Johnny Guitar” which was added to the National Registry in 2008. “Johnny” is a unique and one-of-a-kind Western which Michael Schlesinger attempts to get a handle on by saying: “There are very few films—especially from Hollywood studios—that […]

“Close Encounters of the Third Kind”: National Film Registry #19

It was in 2007, that the sci-fi classic “Close Encounters” was added to the Library’s National Film Registry.  Richard Dreyfuss, Teri Garr and Melinda Dillon starred in the film that forever put Devil’s Tower on the map and seemed to codify the popular depiction of space aliens. Writer Matt Zoller Seitz looked back at this landmark film […]

“The T.A.M.I. Show”: National Film Registry #18

Concert films make up an element on the LC’s National Film Registry.  For example, the legendary “The T.A.M.I. Show,” a legendary, filmed gathering of some amazing rock and roll talent, was added to the Registry in 2006.  Maybe another great concert film will make the list this year….  The 25 new selections for the Registry will be announced […]

“Rear Window”: National Film Registry #17

“Rear Window” is the classic film thriller of window-watching and murder; it was added to the Registry in 2005. Former Library of Congress Film Preservation Board member John Belton recapped the film by stating: “‘Rear Window’ tells the story of a globe-trotting photo-journalist who breaks his leg on a dangerous assignment and is confined to a wheelchair in […]

“Fox Movietone News: Jenkins Orphanage Band”: Film Registry #15

Before television came along, news reels were a vital way for Americans to be kept abreast of important news and events and, unlike radio, news reels could use the magic of film to illustrate their stories.  One of the great purveyors of news reels was Fox Movietone.  This Movietone installment, from 1928, was chosen for the […]

Now Playing at the Packard Campus — Nov. 29 – Dec. 1, 2018

The following is a guest post by Jenny Paxson of the Packard Campus. Thursday, November 29 (7:30 p.m.) The Ghost Ship (RKO, 1943) RKO horror producer Val Lewton teamed with director Mark Robson for this psychological thriller starring Richard Dix as a power-crazy captain of a merchant ship. A young merchant marine officer (Russell Wade) […]

“This Is Cinerama”: Film Registry #14

From the list of the LC’s 2002 Registry selection comes this  feature-length look at one of the (literally) biggest breakthroughs in film technology–Cinerama.  Cinerama is one of the many audience pleasing, technological advancements in the movie-going experience that is recognized via the Registry.  (Another is the 1953 film “House of Wax,” the first feature to […]

“Jam Session”: National Film Registry #13

In the short film, “Jam Session,” Duke Ellington and his band perform “C Jam Blues.”  “Jam Session” is a “soundie,” the music videos of their day. These short musical films were produced largely between 1940 and 1946 for showing in Panorams, coin-operated film jukeboxes that were placed in nightclubs, bars, lounges and restaurants.  As Mark Cantor […]

“Dracula”: National Film Registry #12

In 2000, the National Film Registry recognized the timeless original “Dracula” starring the one and only Bela Lugosi.  This haunting tale, based on the novel by Bram Stoker, has never been far from the screen. Gary Rhodes said of the un-killable Count: “Few characters in the history of literature and film have proven as deathless […]