The following is a guest post by Jenny Paxson of the Packard Campus.
Thursday, February 7 (7:30 p.m.)
Bright Road (MGM, 1953)
A year before Dorothy Dandridge and Harry Belafonte made the Cinemascope color musical Carmen Jones, they starred together in this low-budget but sincere drama about a rural teacher in a southern school trying to reach a problem child. Directed by Gerald Mayer and adapted from a Christopher Award-winning story by West Indian schoolteacher Mary Elizabeth Vroman, Bright Road was an anomaly for an African American film of the period in that it was neither a musical nor a treatment of racial issues. Vroman helped write the screenplay and in so doing, becoming the first black member of the Screen Writers Guild. 35mm archival print, 68 min.
Friday, February 8 (7:30 p.m.)
The Unsuspected (Warner Bros., 1947)
Michael Curtiz directed this film noir murder mystery starring Claude Rains as Victor Grandison, the well-known host of a true-crime radio program. Following the mysterious death of an employee at his mansion, Grandison becomes embroiled in an elaborate plot involving impersonation, blackmail and murder. With Curtiz’s skilled direction, Woody Bredell’s evocative cinematography, sharp dialogue, and a first-rate cast including Audrey Totter, Constance Bennett and Joan Caulfield, The Unsuspected has been singled out as an underrated example of the genre, loaded with quintessential noir scenes. Film noir historian Eddie Muller wrote, “This is what you want–it’s a locked room mystery story with incredibly well-dressed people beautifully photographed; it’s absolutely spectacular.” 35mm film print produced by the Library of Congress Film Preservation lab in 2014. 103 min.
Saturday, February 9 (7:30 p.m.)
Lincoln (Touchstone Pictures, 2012)
Daniel Day-Lewis portrays the 16th President of the United States in this critically acclaimed historical drama set during the final four months of Lincoln’s life. Tony Kushner’s screenplay was loosely based on Doris Kearns Goodwin’s biographical portrait Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln, and focuses on Lincoln’s efforts to have the Thirteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution passed by the House of Representatives. Filming took place at several historic structures in Richmond, Fredericksburg, and Petersburg, Virginia. Directed and produced by Steven Spielberg, the film also features Sally Field, David Strathairn, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, James Spader, Hal Holbrook and Tommy Lee Jones in supporting roles. More than 30 national critics named Lincoln to their Top Ten Films of the Year list and it received multiple nominations and awards, including twelve Oscar nominations. Rated PG-13. 35mm archival film print. 149 min.
For more information on our programs, please visit the website at: www.loc.gov/avconservation/theater/.